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Tuesday, 30 October 2012
Page: 12643

Ms RISHWORTH (Kingston) (21:35): Last week, I was delighted to attend Willunga High School, which was host to the opening of the Southern Adelaide and Fleurieu Trade School. This was opening of a cluster of trades training centres funded by this government. It was a wonderful occasion indeed. I was there to represent the Minister for School Education, Early Childhood and Youth. I was welcomed by a number of students there from a range of different schools in the region. They displayed some of their wares from the trades that they are learning.

The Southern Adelaide and Fleurieu Trade School received $9.5 million as part of round 2 of the trades training centres in schools money provided by this government. This money was very wisely used by a group of schools. The applicants for this money were a group of schools in my local electorate and the neighbouring electorate of Mayo. That group include Willunga High School, Hallett Cove School, Reynella East College, Wirreanda High School, Seaford 6-12 School, Mount Compass Area School, Victor Harbor High School and Yankalilla Area School. This group of schools got together and decided that, rather than duplicating trades training in the region, they would cooperate. They have been cooperating for many years in terms of trades training, sharing student experience and ensuring that those in the southern suburbs and the wider region get the opportunities that they deserve.

Indeed, the money that came from the trades training centre—the $9.5 million—could only better enable these schools to deliver a wide range of skills.

We know that academia is not for all students, but we also equally know that finishing a year 12 certificate is critically important for young people's future. If we are able to encourage young people to stay at school and also have an opportunity to experience a trade and get a certificate in that, it is vitally important.

It was very concerning to me to read the statistic that a person leaving school before finishing year 11 will earn around 20 per cent below average earnings. That is quite significant, so ensuring that there is trades training available at our schools is critically important. And who better to do it than our schools, in collaboration with RTOs and other registered training organisations. It is so critical that we do deliver this to engage young people in the local area.

Some of the certificates being offered by these eight schools are: agriculture, horticulture, construction, automotive engineering, electro technology, hairdressing, hospitality, bricklaying, carpentry, cooking, motor mechanics, plumbing, general electrician, welding, plastering and tiling. I can imagine that many of us in this place could not dream of those types of opportunities when we went to school. But here in the southern suburbs of Adelaide, enabled by the trades training money provided by this government, we are seeing real opportunities for many young people.

I was so pleased to be there and celebrate all the hard work that was done by all the schools in the area. But I think it is important to note the collaboration between these schools, which is something that is quite unique, and many other regions can learn from it. They actually have their timetabling done so that they can move between schools to do the trade they are really interested in. I think that is very exciting.

These schools were granted in round two, as was the trades training centre at Southern Vales Christian College. I was also pleased to have attended that in September. They have really gone for a focus in hospitality. Being in Aldinga there is a real connection between food and wine. They are just a step away from the McLaren Vale region, so they have really focused on delivering hospitality training. That was also very exciting.

This program will continue, with money being delivered to Christies Beach High School. As these trades and certificates are rolled out I will be very pleased and I commend all those involved. (Time expired)