Data released today from the National Centre for Vocational Education Research shows almost 41,800 less young people (aged between 14 and 24 years) enrolled in publicly funded vocational education and training in 2013 compared with 2012.
VERTO Chief Executive Officer, Ron Maxwell, said the findings, which were reported in the Australian vocational education and training statistics: Students and courses 2013 report, were alarming.
"These results confirm that a 25.9 per cent decrease across Australia in apprenticeship and traineeship enrolments from 2012 to 2013 has also had an impact on the number of students undertaking training.
"We are pleased, however, that enrolment numbers for people with a disability in particular rose by 1.9 per cent in 2013 compared to 2012.
“As a Disability Employment Services provider, this news is encouraging,” Mr Maxwell said
Mr Maxwell also said that as VERTO is both a registered training organisation and an adult and community education provider, it was interesting to note a decrease in enrolments by 2.4 per cent for registered training organisations, but a 14.9 per cent increase in enrolments for adult and community education providers.
“We are pleased to see an increase in enrolments for adult and community education providers, however the fact remains enrolments were down across the broader training sector in 2013.
“Enrolments in New South Wales in particular were down 5.8 per cent in 2013 compared to 2012.
“Minister Macfarlane’s recent commitment to freeze the Australian Skills Quality Authority’s (ASQA) fees in 2014-15 and to ensure the regulator’s funding can support his broader, comprehensive reform agenda are just some of many much needed measures that will help the training sector.
“Reducing administrative costs for training providers will only help to strengthen the vocational education sector.
“Similarly, we welcome the New South Wales Government’s $95 million commitment to the Smart and Skilled program (effective 1 January 2015), which will allow people who are eligible and unemployed to access allowances for training and better skill them for employment,” Mr Maxwell said.