Friday 6 September 2013

Who owns TAFE?

The NSW Government released two documents this week describing two very different views of the future for TAFE NSW.  The TAFE Commission Board’s ‘Let’s Talk about TAFE had several thousand respondents focusing on the TAFE benefits to community and industry.  96% of people said TAFE services are valuable to NSW, 97% feel TAFE NSW is important for providing apprentice training, and 
86% feel TAFE is valuable to their local community.  Surely a strong endorsement from the people of NSW for their TAFE system! 

At the same time the Government released Owner expectations of TAFE NSW.  In this the Government refers both to TAFE as a statewide service and as a government‐owned business. The TAFE Community Alliance believes that it is the people who own TAFE.  It is a publicly owned vocational education and training statewide system being made by government to operate like a 

The Alliance asks the NSW Government the fundamental questions: 

•     Why should TAFE have to compete for its core funding to deliver courses? 

•     Why should it become less reliant on government funding when it is a public system? 

•     When did the taxpayer decide it was to become a business? 

•     Why in a document about TAFE NSW, is there no reference to either teachers or teaching? 

The people of NSW own their public TAFE system, and they want it to remain accessible with low fees and able to deliver high quality courses with professional teachers across NSW.  How do we know that?  The Government told us so in the report from the consultation it requested ‘Let’s Talk about TAFE’.  The Alliance calls on the NSW Government to listen to the people of NSW and to properly fund and support its TAFE system. 

For further information, contact: TAFE Community Alliance

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