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Government welcomes 'How Young People Are Faring' report.

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The Hon Julia Gillard MP

Minister for Education. Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations

Minister for Social Inclusion. Deputy Prime Minister

The Hon Kate Ellis MP

Minister for Youth; Minister for Sport

15 October, 2008

Joint Media Release

Government welcomes 'How Young People Are Faring' Report

The Minister for Education, Julia Gillard and the Minister for Youth, Kate Ellis, today welcomed the report How Young People Are Faring by the Foundation for Young Australians.

The report released today shows that young people who have not achieved Year 12 or equivalent qualifications or who do not have post school qualifications fare worse in transition from school to work and in the labour market more generally.

This important report provides support for the Rudd Government’s Education Revolution, especially the emphasis on lifting attainment of Year 12 or equivalent qualifications.

For the last decade, retention rates to Year 12 in Australia have not improved. Australia’s Year 12 or equivalent retention rate is low by OECD standards.

The Rudd Government is committed to delivering on its ambitious target for 2020; that 90 per cent of young Australians will have attained Year 12 or an equivalent qualification. This would establish Australia in the top third of OECD countries.

This report clearly shows that targeted, enduring and well resourced programs are needed if we are to reach this ambitious goal.

The $2.5 billion Trade Training in Schools Program is giving young people opportunities to learn a trade while at school to increase school retention rates, improve transitions from school to work and address skill shortages.

The new national curriculum will ensure every young Australian has access to a world class curriculum, to lift achievement and drive up school retention rates.

The report also shows that the Government's National Partnership aimed at disadvantaged school communities is desperately needed to ensure low SES students and low achievers don't fall through the gaps.

The Government is committed to Australia’s youth as they tackle the complex challenges ahead.

The Office for Youth was recently established to identify key issues impacting on the lives of young Australians, and will play a strategic policy advice role to ensure that they are given the opportunities they deserve now and in the future.

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