The legislative and policy changes that made VET for year 11 and 12 students a central part of the public education system were rolled out reasonably well.
About 70% of public school year 11 and 12 students in 2016 were in certificate II or higher courses. Schools ran a wide range of courses and most students were in their preferred course. DoE has no targets for completion, but performance was reasonable, with 85% of year 12 students completing a qualification in 2015. However, some weakness must be addressed to get the best outcomes for WA’s senior public school students.
Most DoE students are in auspiced courses which is an economical and scalable use of school staff and resources. However, TAC found significant quality and compliance issues on both sides of auspice arrangements in 2014 and 2015.
DoE has not set standard arrangements for auspicing with RTOs, such as common contract elements or clear guidelines on choosing suitable courses. While DoE gives some financial assistance to schools, it has limited oversight and no plan for how its teaching workforce will meet the growing need to maintain industry experience and VET delivery qualifications on top of teaching qualifications.
DoE has produced guidelines for use by schools when choosing RTOs and coordinating VET but it has limited staff to support VET. It does not analyse outcomes in detail, and support has not grown to match effort in schools. Getting support for schools right is important, particularly with auspicing as the main delivery mode.
Schools have sound basic governance for VET, and DoE has an improved and transparent funding system in place for schools. However, DoE and DTWD have not worked out the best way to allocate training funded by DTWD.