"The future of TAFE relies on the NSW Labor Party to win government in 2019, to restore this once great educational system."
- Shadow Minister for Skills and Member for Wyong, David Harris MP
NSW TAFE gives our state the world’s best vocational education training for our communities both in Sydney and the regions. It is TAFE that has trained the people who built NSW to be the best state that we all love dearly.
Although, after decades of training and educating people in NSW, TAFE is under attack by Premier Mike Baird and John Barilaro, Minister for Skills and Member for Monaro under the NSW Liberal/National Government’s ‘Smart and Skilled’ program.
27 TAFE campuses are already flagged to go, with more to follow. If Mike Baird and “Minister for Skills” John Barilaro get their way, our TAFE will be sold off for good.
The reality is that the ability to gain the skills needed to excel in today’s workforce are being ripped away. This
affects everyone in NSW but will disproportionately detract services from students in rural and regional districts.
TAFE has a unique place in the Australian educational landscape. It acts as the educational provider for people
from all walks of life. A student, who enters through the doors of their local TAFE, can walk out with the skills to
run a business, work as hairdresser, speak a new language, learn a trade, or design 3D animations.
Mike Baird, and the NSW Liberals and Nationals don’t place the same value in the TAFE system. Instead of
investing in services, the Coalition have decided to open TAFE’s across NSW to “asset recycling”.
The Labor Party want to see a TAFE system that empowers students, expanding their opportunities, and supports hardworking teachers. Mike Baird and his Liberal/Nationals coalition think that TAFE can be demolished and the parts sold to the highest bidder.
TAFE has been, and should continue to be the primary point of delivery for skills education particularly in
Regional NSW. The Baird Government is failing to commit to protecting the crucial resources needed by
regional communities. Instead they’re busy focusing on how they can use these sites for something else.
The reality is that as you reduce the number of educational choices, you reduce the opportunities for
people to gain the skills needed to excel. The effect of this will disproportionately detract services from
students in rural and regional districts.
The NSW Parliament is currently running an inquiry into Vocational Education and Training (VET) Giving us an invaluable opportunity to tell the government exactly what it is we love about TAFE and why we have such grave fears for its future. Our Upper House Members should be applauded for their efforts in holding the Liberal/Nationals government to account.
However, our fears are well founded. Since the beginning of last year, with the introduction of the Smart and Skilled policy, 30,000 fewer students enrolled in TAFE. That’s a phenomenal amount of kids who are missing out on the opportunity to learn new skills and get a better chance in life through furthering their education. TAFEs are buckling under pressure because funding has been ripped away from them and pumped into private training providers who, recent research has shown, are making 30-50% profit from the more than $1 billion state funding that previously went to TAFE. This isn’t a coincidence and is leading to the privatisation by stealth of our TAFE system.
The State Parliamentary Labor Party needs the help of every Rank and File NSW Labor member to help us get the message through to the community; they need to understand what the Liberals and Nationals are doing to our TAFE system.
Our team have been working hard getting the message made on the floor of Parliament, but we need to win this debate on people’s doorsteps and get the facts clear on what John Barilaro and Mike Baird are doing.
The future of TAFE relies on the NSW Labor Party to win government in 2019, in order to restore this once great educational system to better the lives of our communities and the future of NSW.
Speak to your neighbours, your work colleagues, your friends and family about what this Liberal Government is doing and together we can ensure a Labor Government in 2019.