Educational Pathways Pilot Program expanding into more schools and regions

Launched in 2020, the success of the Educational Pathways Pilot Program is being scaled-up from Term 1, 2022.

11 October 2021
Image: Students engaged in pilot program initiatives, apprenticeships and traineeships

ANNOUNCEMENT

A pilot program being trialled in 24 schools and designed to improve education and career outcomes for high school students will be expanded to schools across NSW in 2022 thanks to a $13.5 million investment from the NSW Government.

The Educational Pathways Pilot Program, designed to introduce students to different post-school study and employment options, will be offered to up to 163 public schools next year across NSW.

The program has been extremely successful since it was introduced in 2020, with a tripling in the number of students enrolling in school-based apprenticeships and traineeships, (SBATs), allowing a growing number of year 10, 11 and 12 students to earn while they learn valuable new skills.

Minister for Skills and Tertiary Education Geoff Lee said investing in career education and skills training for young people was key to keeping the NSW economy strong into the future.

“Creating a synergy between training pathways and industry’s needs through this program will help to reduce future skill shortages and create a highly employable workforce,” Mr Lee said.

“This is particularly important in the current climate where NSW is relying on the local workforce to plug skills gaps exacerbated by the pandemic.”

“The program is about exposing school students to the different directions they can take in their career so they can make informed and confident decisions. Successfully moving from the pilot phase to become the Educational Pathways Program is rewarding indeed.”

Minister for Education Sarah Mitchell said the NSW Government was supporting high school students looking to take the first step in their career.

“Greater Year 12 retention, increased completion of school-based apprenticeships and traineeships, and increased participation in post-school education are just some of the benefits of the program.”

The NSW Government’s investment in this program will include:

  • Strengthened career guidance and support for school students under specialist Career Head Teachers and dedicated Mentors for school based apprentices and trainees.
  • Immersion programs, with TAFE NSW and Group Training Organisations (GTOs), to give high school students ‘vocational tasters’ of different industries.
  • Workshops to teach students work-ready employability skills on how to prepare for a job interview, communicating with employers, and how to manage their online presence.
  • Dedicated careers support to connect students to local employers and jobs.

NSW Government secondary schools in the following regions will be offered the opportunity to opt in to the Educational Pathways Program in 2022, including:

  • Illawarra
  • New England and North West
  • Newcastle
  • Lake Macquarie & Hunter Valley
  • Central Coast
  • Southern Highlands & Shoalhaven
  • Western Sydney (Parramatta and Blacktown).


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