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The Crucial Role of Independent RTOs in Addressing Workforce Shortages in Western Australia

As Western Australia addresses workforce shortages through skills training, government data highlights the essential role played by independent registered training organisations (RTOs). These findings are particularly significant as the state government enters negotiations for a new five-year skills funding agreement with the Australian government.

Independent RTOs Supporting the Majority of Learners

Of the 403,454 students enrolled in skills training in Western Australia, 93.3% are supported by around 370 independent RTOs. These institutions excel in delivering higher-level and complex qualifications, assisting 53.8% of apprentices and trainees, 64.6% of diploma and higher qualifications, and 68.6% of Certificate IV qualifications.

Independent Training Providers: Impact Across Rural and Remote Areas

The government data reveals that independent RTOs support 79.1% of rural, remote, and regional Western Australia students. Moreover, they provide crucial support to 80.7% of indigenous students and 73.2% of students with disabilities in the state.

Student Satisfaction

Independent training providers demonstrate remarkable levels of student satisfaction. Government data shows that independent RTOs outperform their public sector counterparts in various areas, with 90% assessment satisfaction, 78.4% support services satisfaction, 83.4% learning resources satisfaction, and 88.1% achieved training goals.

Importance in Funding Negotiations

Given the significant contributions of independent RTOs, their role should be a decisive factor in the state government’s negotiations for a new skills funding agreement. Acknowledging the higher student satisfaction rates achieved by private RTOs, it is crucial to allocate funding based on students’ choices and preferences.

As Western Australia addresses workforce shortages, independent RTOs emerge as the key players in skills training. Their significant contribution, especially in rural and remote areas, and the higher levels of student satisfaction they achieve make them indispensable. The state government’s negotiations for a new skills funding agreement should reflect the importance of independent training providers in meeting the training needs of students and the workforce.

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