Victoria’s decision to provide free TAFE courses for crucial industry jobs has been welcomed by the education sector.
Dr Rick Ede, the chief executive of Chisholm TAFE at Dandenong, said the $172 million commitment in last week’s state budget was a clear recognition of the important role TAFEs play in the education system.
“We know TAFE is critical in meeting Australia’s skills needs for the emerging jobs in our changing economy as well as filling skills shortages across a range of sectors,” Ede said.
The funding will provide tuition-free training for 30 non-apprenticeship courses, and 18 courses that provide pathways to apprenticeships.
“These courses represent areas where there are predicted to be skill shortages and this announcement means we can ensure that our apprentices and graduates are ready to fill these positions,” Ede explained.
The state government recently announced a new in-principle industrial agreement with TAFE institutes and teachers, providing teachers a pay increase of 2.5% per annum, and a 2.9% increase linked to service delivery improvements.
“This new agreement for TAFE teachers recognises and values their contribution to the important role we play in education and the positive and meaningful impact we have on our students and communities,” Ede said.