What comes next? Recent school leavers’ post-school destination experiences

This report was originally published 26 October 2021.

This fact sheet provides a high-level overview of findings from the 2020 NSW Secondary Students’ Post-School Destinations and Experiences Survey. Of those recent school leavers who answered the survey:

  • 1,089 Year 12 completers (493 male, 596 female)
  • 1,320 early school leavers (840 male, 480 female)

were asked to answer a series of themed questions about their satisfaction with their post-school destinations and how well their school courses and destinations are preparing them for their future careers.

How well did Year 12 completers’ school courses prepare them for their future careers?

A pie chart showing the extent to which Year 12 completers school courses prepared them for their future careers. 16 percent of students said their courses prepared them A lot, 38 percent said their courses prepared them A fair bit, 36 percent said their courses prepared them A little bit and 10 percent said their courses did not prepare them at all.
Image: 90% of Year 12 completers felt that their school courses prepared them at least somewhat for their future careers.

How satisfied were Year 12 completers who entered education, training or employment?

57% of Year 12 completers were very or extremely satisfied with their current course, apprenticeship, traineeship or job.

Horizontal bar chart showing the level of satisfaction of Year 12 completers with their current course, apprenticeship, traineeship or job. 57 percent were extremely or very satisfied, 40 percent were moderately or slightly satisfied, 2 percent were not at all satisfied and 2 percent indicated other.

How relevant are Year 12 completers’ post-school destinations?

74% of Year 12 completers thought their current course, apprenticeship, traineeship or job was completely or quite relevant to their future career.

Horizontal bar chart showing Year 12 completers perceptions of the relevance of their course, apprenticeship, traineeship or job to their future career. 53 percent rated it as completely relevant, 21 percent rated it as quite relevant, 13 percent rated it as slightly relevant, 12 percent rated it as not at all relevant and 1 percent indicated other.
Top 3 careers Year 12 completers expect to have when they are about 30 years old:
  1. Professionals (such as education, health and ICT professionals – 55.1%)
  2. Community and personal service workers (such as carers, aides and hospitality workers – 6.0%)
  3. Managers (such as chief executives and retail managers – 5.4%).
Female Year 12 completers were more likely to expect to have a job as a professional (61.1% vs. 48.1%) at 30 years of age.
Male Year 12 completers were more likely to expect to have a job as a technician and trades worker (7.5% vs. 2.3%) at 30 years of age.

How well did early school leavers’ school courses prepare them for their future careers?

A pie chart showing the extent to which early school leavers school courses prepared them for their future careers. 8 percent of students said their courses prepared them A lot, 21 percent said their courses prepared them A fair bit, 41 percent said their courses prepared them A little bit, 29 percent said their courses did not prepare them at all and 1 percent indicated Other.
Image: 70% of early school leavers felt that school courses prepared them at least somewhat for their future careers.
Top 3 careers early school leavers expect to have when they are about 30 years old:
  1. Technicians and trades workers (35.1%)
  2. Professionals (such as education, health and ICT professionals – 15.0%)
  3. Community and personal service workers (such as carers, aides and hospitality workers – 10.8%).
Female early school leavers were more likely to expect to have a job as a professional (27.1% vs. 7.5%) or community and personal service worker (16.3% vs. 7.3%) at 30 years of age.
Male early school leavers were more likely to expect to have a job as a technician and trades worker (48.0% vs. 14.4%) at 30 years of age.

How satisfied were early school leavers who entered education, training or employment?

71% of early school leavers were very or extremely satisfied with their current course, apprenticeship, traineeship or job.

Horizontal bar chart showing the level of satisfaction of Early leavers with their current course, apprenticeship, traineeship or job. 71 percent were extremely or very satisfied, 24 percent were moderately or slightly satisfied, 2 percent were not at all satisfied and 3 percent indicated other.

How relevant are early school leavers’ post-school destinations?

75% of early school leavers thought their current course, apprenticeship, traineeship or job was completely or quite relevant to their future career.

Horizontal bar chart showing Early school leavers perceptions of the relevance of their course, apprenticeship, traineeship or job to their future career. 58 percent rated it as completely relevant, 17 percent rated it as quite relevant, 12 percent rated it as slightly relevant, 12 percent rated it as not at all relevant and 1 percent indicated other.
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