Posted on 02. May, 2012 in News
Victorian TAFE students will face reduced course selection, larger class sizes and less support following the Baillieu Government’s savage cuts to TAFEs in the 2012-13 State Budget, the Shadow Minister for Skills, Steve Herbert, said today.
Mr Herbert said the Victorian TAFE Association estimates the Budget has cut a massive $100 million in funding to TAFEs each year.
“This is bad news for TAFE students and teachers. It is also bad news for the many thousands of Victorians who have lost their jobs and are hoping to retrain and seek new skills to help them find a new job,” he said.
“The Baillieu Government says it cares about helping Victorians get a job – and improving the productivity of Victoria’s work place by investing in the skills of our young people.
“Yet, Mr Baillieu is happy to put a knife to trade and vocational education and training. He cut $50 million from VCAL last year, last October he cut $40 million to TAFEs, and today, we learn he has slashed a further $100 million from TAFEs.
“This is the largest single cut to TAFE funding in Victoria’s history.”
Mr Herbert said TAFEs will be forced to scrap courses, cut staff numbers, hike student fees and drop community service obligations.
“TAFEs are already recording operating deficits, and these cuts will only make things worse and I fear many TAFEs will find themselves financially unviable.”
Mr Herbert said Victorian TAFEs also missed out on badly needed capital investment.
Mr Herbert said the State Budget had also cut funding for the highly successful Skills for Growth program that provided 45,000 small and medium Victorian business with education and training.
“These further cuts to TAFE funding simply defy common sense. It comes as Victoria faces a jobs crisis when you would expect a good Government to invest in people’s skills which, in turn, business need when the economy improves,” he said.
“We all know Mr Baillieu has no plan for jobs. Now we know his only plan for skills is to cut funding for training.”