Daniel Andrews has abandoned Gippsland’s Federation Training at a time when a strong and stable training system has never been more important to the Latrobe Valley.
Skills and Training Minister Gayle Tierney tabled TAFE annual reports on Tuesday, minutes before the 2017-18 Victorian State Budget was announced.
For the second year in a row Federation Training has failed to publish an annual report.
Shadow Training, Skills and Apprenticeships Minister Steph Ryan said Daniel Andrews must immediately step in.
“The Latrobe Valley community can have no confidence in Federation Training’s financial stability, governance or performance when its annual report is more than 700 days late,” Ms Ryan said.
“At a time when youth unemployment has risen to 14.9 per cent, it’s important young people can have confidence in local training options.
“Student numbers have declined drastically across the Valley and after leaving the organisation to fend for itself for two years Daniel Andrews needs to step in and fix this crisis immediately.”
There were 2400 fewer Gippsland students in training in 2015, compared to 2014, according to the 2015 Victorian Training Market Data report.
Member for Morwell Russell Northe said higher education offered vital opportunities to reskill and upskill in the Latrobe Valley, after significant local business closures.
“At a time when we’ve lost 750 jobs at Hazelwood and hundreds more in the local forestry industry are facing uncertainty, we need a strong training system to make sure local people can reskill or upskill,” Mr Northe said.
“Daniel Andrews and Gayle Tierney must urgently offer Federation Training the support it needs to get the books sorted out.”
The 2017-18 State Budget papers reveal the Andrews Government has now cut $45 million from training and will review typical transparency measures that show there’s been a significant drop in students enrolled in training.
“Gayle Tierney is so distracted dealing with Victoria’s crime tsunami that she has dropped the ball on training,” Ms Ryan said.
“Daniel Andrews must immediately step in to offer Fed Training the support it needs to get up-to-date.”