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How Independent RTOs Address Workforce Shortages in Western Australia

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How Independent RTOs Address Workforce Shortages in Western Australia

Addressing Workforce Shortages: Independent RTOs Take the Lead

In Western Australia, where workforce shortages have become a pressing issue, independent registered training organisations (RTOs) have emerged as key players in meeting the state’s skills training needs. As the government engages in negotiations for a new five-year skills funding agreement with the Australian Government, it is crucial to recognise and appreciate the significant contribution made by independent RTOs in fostering workforce development.

Empowering Students: The Dominance of Independent RTOs

Approximately 370 independent RTOs support 93.3% of the 403,454 students enrolled in skills training across Western Australia. These RTOs actively perform a vital role in facilitating higher-level and complex qualifications, handling 53.8% of apprentices and trainees, 64.6% of diploma and higher qualifications, and 68.6% of Certificate IV qualifications.

The latest government data from the 2023 Western Australia Skills Training Snapshot highlights the crucial role of independent RTOs in supporting students in rural, remote, and regional areas. These RTOs account for 79.1% of student enrolments in these regions, making skills training accessible across the state. Furthermore, independent RTOs demonstrate their commitment to inclusive education by supporting 80.7% of indigenous students and 73.2% of students with disabilities.

Exceptional Student Satisfaction: Private RTOs Set the Standard

Government data reveals that private training providers in Western Australia have achieved exceptional levels of student satisfaction.

When compared to their public TAFE counterparts, private RTOs consistently outperform in various categories, including assessment (90% against 89.6%), support services (78.4% against 75.4%), learning resources (83.4% against 81.5%), achieving training goals (88.1% against 86.2%), employment outcomes (66.9% against 63.9%), and employed after training (79.5% against 76.1%).

These statistics demonstrate the quality and effectiveness of independent RTOs in delivering outstanding training experiences.

Putting Students First: Advancing a New Skills Funding Agreement

As the Western Australian Government negotiates a new five-year skills funding agreement, the Independent Tertiary Education Council Australia (ITECA) emphasises putting students at the forefront.

ITECA advocates for a funding agreement that empowers students to choose their preferred training provider, whether a quality independent RTO or a public TAFE college.

Recognising the immense value that independent RTOs bring to skilling, upskilling, and reskilling the workforce is crucial for higher levels of student satisfaction.

Shaping a Promising Future: Recognising the Contribution of Independent RTOs

With independent RTOs supporting most students in skills training across Western Australia, it is essential to allocate adequate funding that reflects their significant role.

The 2023 Western Australia Skills Training Snapshot highlights the need to prioritise student choice and support the provider of their choice in the new skills funding agreement.

By embracing independent RTOs, Western Australia can unleash the full potential of skills training and build a highly skilled workforce ready to thrive in the evolving job market.

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