Article Categories: Goldstein Media Releases, Education and Training
The Prime Minister recently announced a major package of skills initiatives worth $837 million over five years which includes work skills vouchers, support for mid career apprentices, business skills vouchers for apprentices, more engineering places at universities and incentives for higher technical skills.
“Skills for the Future will deliver more opportunities for Bayside residents to gain new skills, and help to develop a more entrepreneurial workforce” said Andrew Robb, the Federal Member for Goldstein.
“For Australia to compete in a globalised, rapidly changing market place we must build highly skilled, flexible and responsive workforces.”
“This skills packages will encourage Bayside residents to keep upgrading their skills so that they can respond to the changes in the technology and other needs of modern businesses.”
This packaged includes five key programs:
• Work Skills Vouchers – $408m to support adults who want to further their education. People aged 25 years and over who do not have Year 12 or equivalent qualifications will be eligible for vouchers up to $3000 to assist them with the costs of studying Year 12 or vocational and technical education courses at Certificate II level.
• Support for Mid-Career Apprentices: $307m to support mid-career workers aged 30 years and over to upgrade their skills through an apprenticeship in a trade occupation which is in high demand through a wage subsidy of $150 per week in the first year of the apprenticeship, and $100 in the second year.
• Business Skills Vouchers for Apprentices - $12m for vouchers of $500 to apprentices to contribute towards the cost of gaining accredited business skills training. As more apprentices are moving on to become self-employed, small business operators or independent contractors when they finish their apprenticeships it is important that they have the skills to operate their own business.
• More Engineering Places at University - $56m to address a shortfall in engineering skills in Australia which was highlighted in the Audit of Science, Engineering and Technology Skills. From January 2008 the Government will provide more than 500 Commonwealth supported engineering places at university, with universities able to utilise the places in areas of engineering where there is most demand.
• Incentives for Higher Technical Skills - $54m to support Australians in the workplace upgrade their qualifications. The existing Australian Apprenticeships Incentives Programme will be expanded to encourage growth in Diploma and Advanced Diploma qualifications, particularly in engineering. For the first time this programme will be open to an employer’s existing workforce and to workers with prior qualifications. These new arrangements will help 24,800 workers over five years attain a Diploma or Advanced Diploma.
“Australia’s future prosperity depends on building a highly skilled, flexible and responsive workforce. These initiatives will represent a major investment to help achieve those goals.”
For more information on these initiatives please visit www.pm.gov.au
Media Contact: Kathryn Hodges 0409 132 567
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