Outreach Programs at TAFE to close

The Federal Member for Dobell, Ms Emma McBride, has joined the chorus of local leaders calling for the NSW Government to stop the closure of Outreach Programs at Wyong TAFE Campus.

Ms McBride said the programs help more than 1,000 marginalised students a year. “We have been told that Outreach Programs are scheduled to end in April, under a TAFENSW restructure,” Ms McBride said. “We support the Central Coast Council motion to write to the NSW Government to stop the closure of Wyong TAFE Outreach Programs, and we commend Councillor Lisa Matthews for raising the issue,” she said.

“TAFE Outreach Programs have been running since 1976 and are vital to the Central Coast community, particularly to groups such as Aboriginal people, the long-term unemployed, people from non-English speaking backgrounds, people with a disability, sole parents and youth at risk. “They provide an introduction to information technology, vocational skills, personal development, sustainability and community development.”

She said courses on offer this term include: Introduction to Computers, Cert III Career Planning in the Community Sector, Cert 1 Digital Media, Introduction to Animal Care Studies, Self-sufficiency, Introduction to Barista Skills, and Introduction to Carpentry. “Outreach programs have made such a tremendous difference to the lives of many people on the Central Coast, and their families and communities,” Ms McBride said.

“They take away the barriers to education and give people the opportunity to succeed.” Member for Wyong and Shadow Minister for the Central Coast, Mr David Harris, said: “It is important that governments continue to invest in Outreach Programs as a means of ensuring equal opportunity, access and equity, social inclusion and employability, and community development. “We will be making sure the Berejiklian Government hears our concerns.”

Source: Media release, Mar 13 Alysson Watson, office of Emma McBride