Victoria’s ECEC workforce to benefit from free training
The Sector > Quality > Professional development > Victoria’s ECEC workforce to benefit from free training in 2024 under new deal

Victoria’s ECEC workforce to benefit from free training in 2024 under new deal

by Freya Lucas

November 10, 2023

The Victorian Government will deliver up to 62,800 extra Fee-Free TAFE places in Victoria next year, supporting the 143 occupation groups in highest demand, including early childhood education and care (ECEC). 


Premier Jacinta Allan, Federal Minister for Skills and Training Brendan O’Connor and Victorian Minister for Training and Skills Gayle Tierney made the announcement yesterday, with Commonwealth funding of almost $107 million to give tens of thousands more people access to education and training in sectors needing workers.


Care courses which encompases ECEC, disability and aged care have benefited the most in terms of free TAFE enrolments in Victoria, with more than 13,600 students signing on to start or advance a care career. 


Careers in construction, health services, and the technology and digital sector are also in high demand. All told, more than 150,000 students have saved more than $380 million in course fees since the program began in 2019. 


“This Commonwealth investment of close to $110 million in Victoria’s skills and training sector will mean more than 60,000 people can access Fee-Free education and training for areas desperately calling out for workers,” Mr O’Connor said.


“Right across the country we need more nurses, more early childhood educators and more new energy and construction workers, this Commonwealth investment makes sure that can happen.”


The funding for Fee-Free TAFE is in addition to federal funding through the National Skills Agreement (NSA) of up to $3.1 billion for Victoria.


Set to begin in January 2024, the landmark five-year National Skills Agreement (NSA) was developed under principles agreed by the National Cabinet to embed nationwide cooperation and strategic investment across Australia’s TAFE and training sector.


A new National Stewardship Model will make sure students are getting the skills they need in areas of national priority – and that sectors and industries with a need for more workers are getting a pipeline of the skilled workers it needs most.


More information about Free TAFE in Victoria is available here.

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