Government funded training effort appears to rise, but is it real

Analysis by Peter Roberts

The number of students in government-funded training in Australian has shown a rare rise, after years of bad news for vocational training in Australia.

A report by the National Centre for Vocational Education Research (NCVER) shows a rise in government-funded students this year.

However the research organisation warns that the rise may be a result of a change in the way student numbers are reported.

A series of NCVER reports has shown Australia’s training effort has been steadily falling since 2014 ranging from STEM education in schools to apprenticeship completions, as reported in numerous stories in @AuManufacturting.

However, in the first six months of 2019, 826,500 students were enrolled in government-funded vocational education and training (VET), a rise of 6.9 per cent on the year prior. They included:

# 799,000 students enrolled in nationally recognised training, a rise of 7.4 per cent.

# 52,300 students enrolled in non-nationally recognised training, an 11.3 pert cent rise.

NCVER said that reporting issues in Western Australia and the Northern Territory had affected percentage change calculations between 2018 and 2019.

“Consequently, caution must be used in the interpretation of these data.”

In other words, the training effort is likely continuing to fall, and this rare good news is merely a statistical aberration.

Picture: NCVER

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