Labor deceit, hypocrisy on TAFE
The latest TAFE announcement from Labor is more of the same deceit and hypocrisy; their record on Vocational Education and Apprenticeships is atrocious. TAFE has always been funded by State Governments, not the Commonwealth. When last in Government at federal level, Labor provided no specific funding for TAFE. Labor’s own Fiscal Plan released at the last election showed “Zero” dollars in new funding for TAFE over the next four years. The previous Labor Government forced TAFE into stronger competition for funding with private vocational training providers that resulted in TAFE’s share of VET students falling from 60% to 49%. In their last year in office from June 2012 to June 2013, while Bill Shorten was Employment Minister, Australia suffered its biggest ever annual decline in apprentice numbers, falling by 110,000. The Coalition Government provides $1.5 billion a year to states and territories to support vocational education and training, and has introduced strong programs for job creating and education. In addition the Coalition Government announced a $1.5 billion Skilling Australians Fund in the May Budget with TAFE expected to have an important role in training many of the extra 300,000 apprentices it creates. TAFE Directors Australia has welcomed the Skilling Australians Fund as being “good for TAFE.