Schools encouraged to register for pathways program

VET Training Awards Tash Stanic © Photo by Salty Dingo 2020 CK

A program to improve education and career outcomes for high school students may be expanded to Central Coast schools over the next two years, thanks to a $13.5M investment from the NSW Government.

The Educational Pathways Program (EPP) will expand from 24 schools up to 139 public high schools across the state, introducing students to different post-school study and employment options.

This follows a successful pilot on the North Coast and in South-West Sydney,

Central Coast schools are being encouraged to register for the program.

It has been successful since it was introduced in 2020, with the number of students enrolling in school-based apprenticeships and traineeships tripling across the schools participating in the pilot.

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.

“Encouraging the next generation to consider an apprenticeship or traineeship through this program will help to reduce future skills shortages and create a highly employable workforce,” Lee said.

“Through this program, a growing number of Year 10, 11 and 12 students are earning and starting their career in industry while learning new skills in the classroom.

“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.”

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,” Mitchell said.

Secondary public schools on the Central Coast, along with those in the Illawarra, New England and North West, Newcastle, Lake Macquarie and Hunter Valley, Southern Highlands and Shoalhaven, as well as Western Sydney suburbs of Parramatta and Blacktown, will have access to the Educational Pathways Program in 2022.

The program will provide: strengthened career guidance and support for school students under specialist teachers for school based apprentices and trainees; immersion programs with Registered Training Organisations, including TAFE NSW, to give high school students ‘vocational tasters’ of different industries; workshops to teach students employability skills, such as how to prepare for a job interview, how to communicate with employers, and how to manage their online presence; and dedicated careers support to connect students to local employers and jobs.

For more information on the EPP visit:

Media release, Oct 11
NSW Government