Australia is facing a skills shortage and TAFE is the frontrunner to help solve this.
Currently even with the positive work done by individual TAFE organisations to attract new students there is still a knowledge gap with some students, parents and teachers which is propagating the skills shortage issue, according to a new Year13 and YouthSense report on Australia’s public VET provider.
The TAFE Report: Changing Young People’s Perceptions of TAFE and Vocational Education has found this lack of understanding has meant negative perceptions of TAFE are holding some students, parents and school teachers back from considering it as a first-choice education option.
With the full potential of what TAFE can offer students today not well known in many schools and households across Australia this is not just a TAFE issue, but a societal issue that needs to be fixed in order to set the foundations for a prosperous Australia.
“TAFE is well-known for its vocational education but it has also recently begun offering degrees as well as a wide variety of courses outside of the traditional trades,” Year13 CEO William Stubley said.
“But there is a lack of understanding amongst some youth, parents and teachers about these developments. We know how important parents and teachers are in the post-school education decision making process so this has meant TAFE isn’t being seen to its full potential by many young people across Australia.”
The report has found 28% of young Australians feel deterred from studying TAFE/VET due to a stigma being attached to it. Contributing to this is how 47% of 15 to 24-year-olds across Australia feel they do not have a well-rounded understanding of TAFE. This is more than double the amount of students who feel they do not have a well-rounded understanding of university.
Seventeen per cent said they have been deterred from studying TAFE/VET due to their parents discouraging them from studying there.
Ten per cent said they have been deterred them from studying TAFE/VET due to their school discouraging them from studying there.
The report has found positive signs emerging for TAFE, especially in NSW where 35% of survey respondents said they’d pursued TAFE compared to 28% nationally. Another 32% from NSW said they’re planning on pursuing TAFE after school, above the 26% nationally.
Student testimonials contained in the report highlight the real-world perceptions of TAFE/VET amongst young people, their parents and teachers. Along with our survey data they provide the basis for the findings of how all those invested in TAFE’s success can respond to make it a first-choice education option in the eyes of the public.
Download your free copy of The TAFE Report report to find out more.