While many university leaders mull over the shape of the post demand driven policy debate, VET advocates are seizing the high ground. Rod Camm from the Australian Council for Private Education and Training is making the case that it is time for the states and commonwealth and industry to combine to look at the nation’s training needs. This is way different from tentative talk of a review of all of post-secondary that puts universities at centre stage, Mr Camm is making a case that training not HE must be core; “It still perplexes me that as each year goes by governments are spending less and less on creating the skills Australia needs for the future. … The big problem facing the sector right now is rebuilding government support and funding so that students and industry can get the skills.”
This is smart politics. The Opposition talked up TAFE for all of last year and while the SA debacle makes this harder, there is space for Labor to make expanding access to skills an election issue. Space the government will not readily concede.