Federal government to withdraw funds from a successful program
The battle between state and federal governments over ‘who should pay for what’ rolls on. WA Education Minister Ljiljanna Ravlich has been reported saying the Aboriginal School Based Traineeship program will not be funded by the federal government beyond 2008.
She says years 11 and 12 retention rates have increased by 10% as a result of this scheme and more than 2000 young Aboriginal people have taken up traineeships under the scheme.
A spokesman for the federal Employment Minister, Kevin Andrews, says the money is provided to state government which ‘administers the funding application’. The WA minister’s reply is that he is ‘trying to shift the blame’, that she has already been told the funding will not continue because it was only intended to get the program up and running.
Last year the National Reconciliation Forum focussed on Aboriginal education and its coordinator, Graham Thomson, says the issue affects the whole country and the federal government has a responsibility to support the program and to to expand Aboriginal education and training.
He says “Two keys aspects of reconciliation are one, education and two, a job….in order to secure and hold down long term employment it is absolutely imperative that Indigenous people are given the chance to maximise their education.”
Have you been involved with any training programs? What is your experience?