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TAFE vs Universities: Student loan schemes cripple trade enrollments

TAFE enrollments are continuing to suffer despite industries screaming out for skilled trades.

TAFE NSW’s CEO Jon Black says the nation’s skills shortage is only going to get worse if the playing field between universities and TAFE isn’t leveled out.

Mr Black tells Ben Fordham TAFE students are slapped with unfair VET fees uni students don’t cop and it’s contributing to a “chronic skills shortage”.

“The employers are screaming out for these people and what do they do? They’re looking offshore for labour.”

Enrollments are particularly low for pre-school teachers, chefs and tradies.

Mr Black says we need to make TAFE the top option for students straight out of school.

“We’ve got to continue to build the confidence in the system, build the confidence that school leavers have an option, a first choice option, of going to TAFE.

“What we need to do is compliment that theory learning they deliver at uni with practical hands-on skills so these people can feel confident getting a job.”

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