TAFE fee cuts aim to boost skills
Fees for several courses at Bunbury’s South Regional TAFE have been slashed in a bid to coax young people back into training to fill emerging skills shortages.
Early childhood education and care, engineering and tourism courses will be more affordable under the State Government’s new $53.5 million initiative.
From January, fees for the 34 targeted courses across the State will drop by as much as two thirds, with Premier Mark McGowan describing the measure as an investment in the State’s future workforce.
“With the Budget back on track, we are slashing fees for specific courses by 50 per cent to make them affordable,” he said.
“Young Western Australians deserve the best possible chance to get into training, or pick up an apprenticeship or traineeship.
“The significant fee reductions will make training more affordable for students wanting to do courses that lead to jobs in demand in Western Australia.”
The package also includes $4 million to upgrade TAFE facilities, including Bunbury’s campus, to support NDIS training.
Bunbury MLA Don Punch said the initiative would result in more local students getting the skills they needed for high demand jobs.
“The issue of the cost of TAFE fees was raised a number of times as a major concern for local people during the mid-way meetings I held early this year, so these fees cuts are a fantastic outcome for our community,” Mr Punch said.
“Quality training is the key to getting a secure, well-paying job and this announcement will see more and more people able to access that training.
“The huge increases in TAFE fees under the last Government were a real deterrent for young people in Bunbury who wanted a TAFE qualification and we are making TAFE accessible again.
“The fee cuts focus on high priority training areas which means our entire community will benefit from more well trained aged care, mental health care and child care professionals.”
Fees for a Certificate III in Early Childhood and Care have been slashed from $2519 to $1200, while a Cert III in Engineering, Fabrication Trade drops from $2808 to $1400 and a Cert III in Tourism will cost $669, down from $2015.
Education and Training Minister Sue Ellery said “more than ever” the job skills needed were learnt at TAFE and training institutions.
“This is a great opportunity for young people to kickstart their careers by getting the skills that employers want, without the hefty course fees,” she said.
“For these courses, the maximum annual fee students will pay is capped at $400 for concession students and youth and $1200 for non-concession students.”
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