Inquiry into the Perceptions and Status of VET
The House of Representatives Standing Committee ‘Inquiry into the Perceptions and Status of VET’ was established with the following Terms of Reference:
“The inquiry will focus on the Commonwealth Skills and Training portfolio and include consideration of:
- information available to students about VET qualifications and related career pathways along a student’s journey through secondary schools, vocational education, higher education, and work transitions, with a focus on how this combines with other sources of advice, including informal advice, to influence student choices, and how Commonwealth funded information for students about VET may be improved;
- perceptions and status of the VET sector and how this may be impacting student enrolment choices, employer engagement, and recruitment and retention of the VET educator workforce, and how perceptions and status of the VET sector can be improved. International best practices in relation to VET perception and qualifications status should be examined;
- successful partnerships between VET providers and employers that have demonstrably created career pathways and secure employment opportunities for students, considering the best practice elements of these successful partnerships, and how more partnering may be encouraged among VET providers and employers; and
- Commonwealth programs which could influence the above, and intersections with state and territory, industry, and philanthropic efforts, including any structural barriers to improvement.”
While I do not have specific expertise in designing VET partnerships or marketing campaigns, in the end I chose to make a submission to highlight the need for caution prior to governments considering further change to the VET sector and introducing new programs.
My submission can be downloaded here.
It focuses on:
- the degree of policy and program churn in VET
- the impact this level of churn, and the associated funding changes, have on public, community and independent providers
- the capacity of the sector to prepare people for the rapidly changing world of work as ChatGPT and other forms of Generative AI are gaining widespread use in a variety of different industry tasks and roles
- my concerns about the level of audit activity being undertaken and apparent anomalies in the audit data
- the need for more provider-level data to be made available, and
- the need for a new bi-partisan approach to VET funding which is less focussed on competition, efficiencies and annual funding contracts.