Data released today by the National Centre for Vocational Education Research (NCVER) confirms Labor’s failure on vocational education and training (VET) with course completion rates slumping to just a third in 2013.

The likelihood of completing a government-funded VET program 2009-13 report shows course completions for all VET qualifications dropped from 36 per cent for 2012 commencements to 34 per cent for 2013 commencements.

Young full-time VET students aged 25 and under were hardest hit, experiencing the biggest drop in completions rates, down 14.5 per cent from 46.8 per cent in 2012 to 40.9 per cent in 2013.

Completions of young students studying every single qualification level, from Certificate 1 to Diploma and above, slumped in 2013 compared with the previous year.

Assistant Minister for Education and Training Senator Simon Birmingham said whilst not all students enrolled in a course to complete a full qualification, course completions were significant.

“For example, in 2014, 86 per cent of students who successfully completed apprenticeships and traineeships were employed after their training,” he said.

“The data released today reveals the full impact of Labor’s failed policies, and how much they let down VET students looking for skills for work, employers looking for skilled graduates to help boost productivity, and taxpayers who provided significant funding for training.”

“Previous NCVER data shows apprenticeship completions flat lined under Labor at around 50 per cent, and today’s data shows this slump extends across the entire VET spectrum of qualifications,” he said.

“In contrast our Government has put industry at the heart of designing VET content to ensure it delivers training for real jobs, established the Industry Skills Fund to help employers upskill their workers to grow their business, and introduced tough new standards for all registered training organisations and reformed VET FEE-HELP to reduce inappropriate enrolments.

“The Australian Government is committed VET training that provides real skills for work, and employment, improves the quality and relevance of training, and raises the status of a VET qualification to its rightful place as a rewarding and valued career pathway.”

Media contact: Caitlin Keage 0427 729 987