Rebekha secures $1M for TAFE upgrades

12 Oct 2020
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TAFE SA will be given $1 million to upgrade its campuses at Mount Barker and Victor Harbor thanks to the advocacy of the Federal Member for Mayo Rebekha Sharkie.

The funding was included in last week's Federal Budget.

"This funding is urgently needed and I thank the Government for taking on board my submissions to upgrade TAFE campuses in our region, and their acknowledgement of my advocacy on this issue," Rebekha said.

Following the Budget announcement, Federal Finance Minister Mathias Cormann said: "The Australian Government is proud to provide nearly $6 million in funding for local infrastructure projects in Mayo that will support communities and rebuild the local economy. Rebekha Sharkie's advocacy has played a key role in securing funding for these projects. Rebekha has been a strong advocate for local infrastructure projects that boost the local economy and strengthen community and relationships."

Much of the work needs to be done at the Mount Barker campus to bring the construction, automotive, community services, hospitality and business and IT facilities up to modern standards.

However, $200,000 will be used at the Victor Harbor campus to upgrade facilities for forklift licensing and training in tourism and hospitality and community services.

“TAFE and similar training organisations have been the poor cousin when it comes to investing in post-secondary education in the past decade, and nowhere is that more evident than in South Australia,” said Rebekha.

“We need to ensure that young people realise that there are many pathways to success and that the support is there to access those pathways. One pathway is certainly TAFE.

“Around 2,500 people across my electorate are involved in TAFE training in some form. All three campuses at Mount Barker, Victor Harbor and Kangaroo Island work exceptionally hard, with very limited resources, facilities and equipment.

“I know from my work in the education sector and my regular meetings with local educators that we need some urgent capital upgrades at the Mount Barker and Victor Harbor TAFE SA campuses.

“Both campuses are located in rapidly growing areas with Mount Barker set to be the second-largest city in SA in the next 30 years with a population of more than 56,000 by 2036.

“The size of both campuses, and the age of their facilities, will significantly restrict the quantity and quality of courses they can offer our young people if we don’t act now.

“We need the facilities to train the carpenters and mechanics of the future, not to mention building up the trained aged care and disability care workforce we are going to need."

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