High schoolers to study skills of the future

Twenty new virtual vocational courses will be available in all public high schools from next year.

16 February 2021
Students sitting at a desk with robotics equipment.
Image: Future focused: Robotics is one of the course offerings that will be available.

Real estate, robotics and entrepreneurship are just some of the 20 new virtual Vocational Education and Training (VET) courses to be made available to every NSW government high school by 2022.

As part of the Curriculum Review, the NSW Government committed to providing opportunities for credit towards qualifications in apprenticeships in high-demand areas such as engineering and robotics. The virtual courses are the first stage of delivering on this commitment.

In addition to existing face-to-face VET, Year 11 and 12 students will have the opportunity to study teacher-led, digitally enabled, virtual TAFE NSW courses that will give them in-demand skills for the workplace. These courses will form part of their HSC and contribute to their ATAR.

Premier Gladys Berejiklian said the new courses were part of the NSW Government’s Curriculum Reform.

“We want to ensure NSW students receive world-class skills training to prepare them for the jobs of the future,” Ms Berejiklian said.

“These courses will help students build skills across emerging industries such as advanced manufacturing, technology and engineering.”

The new virtual VET courses, specifically designed for high school students with digitally enabled and interactive lessons, cover a range of future-focused industry sectors including cyber security, big data, accounting, gaming and community and health services.

Minister for Skills and Tertiary Education Geoff Lee said the NSW Government was committed to meeting skill shortages and enhancing access to exciting industries.

“These new virtual courses are a win-win for students. Not only does it make them instantly employable, they also have the choice to pursue further education in fields with plenty of career opportunities,” Mr Lee said.

“Demand for jobs like cyber security specialists is huge and growing, and these courses are designed to help meet that need. From 2022, a student interested in cyber security will have access to this new online course to get started in the fast-growing tech sector.”

Minister for Education and Early Childhood Learning Sarah Mitchell said developing these online courses was also about making VET more available in regional NSW.

“These are exciting areas for young people to be studying and puts them in the best place to find a job in dynamic industries. Students with a keen interest in future-focused courses will be able to link up with others, no matter where they go to school across NSW,” Ms Mitchell said.

Students will graduate with a nationally recognised VET qualification that forms part of their HSC and contributes to an ATAR.


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