Adult Learning Australia, the national peak body for adult and community education (ACE), welcomes Labor’s commitment to an inquiry into Australia’s post-school education system, and the acknowledgement that the status quo is not working.
“This has been a long time coming. Funding cuts and open competition in the VET system have failed both students and employers,” says Jenny Macaffer, CEO.
“We need government policy that is focussed on the critical and complementary roles of ACE and TAFE in reducing barriers to education and training and promoting a culture of lifelong learning.”
“Government policy needs to recognise ACE as a crucial sector of the post-school education system, and acknowledge its role in retraining and reskilling Australians, and in providing pathways to work and further learning.”
According to the National Centre for Vocational Education Research (NCVER), ACE organisations in Australia currently enrol more than 9% of total VET students, and are acknowledged for their expertise in providing accessible learning opportunities in local communities.
Adult Learning Australia fully supports the immediacy of Labor’s response to the crisis in post-school education and believes that an increased investment in vocational education combined with a coherent policy framework that enables lifelong learning are significant steps forward.
“We need to ensure everyone has access to high quality learning opportunities throughout their lives to ensure they can adapt to changing social and economic circumstances, and to the ever-evolving job market. The ACE sector plays a significant role in this.”
Adult Learning Australia looks forward to providing advice on the scope and terms of this national inquiry.
Adult Learning Australia is holding a Summit in April to discuss the need for a national framework for lifelong learning.
Media contact: Jenny Macaffer, 0488 030 073, firstname.lastname@example.org