The Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the Australian Industry Group and the Business Council of Australia are calling on all governments to make 2017 the year when they renew their investment and reform focus on the vocational education and training (VET) sector.
The first step in this renewal should be the Commonwealth Government committing to establish a new National Partnership that continues their current investment of $1.75 billion over five years for VET reform.
The second step should be for all governments to come together and agree to the new National Partnership focusing on the apprenticeship system. Apprenticeships is the area of reform where government will get maximum return on their investment, and provide the greatest opportunities for young people and Australian workers.
The continuing investment of $1.75 billion over the next five years should use the knowledge and know-how of Australian industry to:
1. Create a genuine national system that is easy for students and employers to use.
2. Increase the number of Australians starting an apprenticeship and moving into work.
3. Remove duplication between governments and better align their programs, services, and funding.
To achieve these three outcomes, the National Partnership should include apprenticeship reforms in the six key areas of:
4. Information and support
6. Pathways to apprenticeships