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South Australia’s training wreck

As the Weatherill Government scrambles to deal with the debacle that is its Skills for All training program the State Liberals have released documents showing TAFE SA has suffered a huge drop in revenue as a direct consequence of falling enrollments.

A Financial Performance Summary obtained by the State Liberals show payments to TAFE SA from the Skills for All program have fallen by $48.6 million this year due to the fact that TAFE SA training activity has been significantly underperforming.

“The Weatherill Government has botched the critically important training portfolio at a time of massive and increasing youth unemployment in South Australia,” said Shadow Minister for Employment, Skills and Training David Pisoni.

“At the very time our young people face intense competition for a limited number of jobs and need better skills than ever before the Weatherill Government has let them down badly.

“Instead of retaining a strong, jobs-focused training sector, the Weatherill Government has slashed funding for training positions at the expense of South Australia’s growing army of unemployed.

“TAFE SA had 2609 employees in 2012 but that number will be reduced to 1795 in 2017-18. “One of the reasons TAFE SA has fallen into such a poor state is the fact the Employment, Skills and Training portfolio has consistently been given to Ministers who are just starting or are at the end of their careers.

“Minister Gago is the latest in a conga line of Ministers rotating through the employment and training portfolio since the Labor Government came to office.

“Jane Lomax-Smith, Paul Caica, Michael O’Brien, Jack Snelling, Tom Kenyon, Grace Portolesi and Gail Gago are collectively responsible for the problems that have engulfed SA TAFE and skills training in South Australia.”