May 5, 2019


The Morrison Government’s Budget not only failed to provide a single dollar of specific funding for TAFE – it was completely silent on TAFE altogether.

The budget’s focus on industry over TAFE shows a complete abrogation of the government’s responsibility to ensure that Australia has a strong, public TAFE system at the heart of vocational education.

During its term in government, the Federal Coalition has overseen:

  • 140,000 fewer apprentices now than when it was elected.
  • $3 billion cut from vocational education.
  • a decline in enrolments in vocational education and training.
  • a decline in TAFE enrolments in particular, which have plummeted by 24.5 per cent.

Haythorpe condemned the Budget saying it would do nothing to revitalise the TAFE sector.

She said the lack of extra funding for TAFE was exacerbated by the Morrison Government’s announcement of a National Skill Commission which would give industry free reign over VET qualification design.

“Scott Morrison’s Budget continues the Federal Coalition’s agenda of privatising vocational education yet TAFE needs to be the heart of a strong, public vocational education sector” Haythorpe said.

In contrast, Labor has guaranteed that at least two-thirds of all government vocational education funding will go to TAFE if it wins government and the Greens is promising that TAFE will be the first priority of all federal VET funding.

Labor has also committed to a comprehensive post-secondary review in the first 100 days of government and $200 million for TAFE infrastructure immediately.

Get involved in the AEU campaign to Stop TAFE Cuts at