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6,000 more Australians turned away from universities and TAFE in 2003.

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Media Release Jenny MacklinMP

Deputy Leader of the Opposition Shadow Minister for Employment, Education & Training Federal Member for Jagajaga

6,000 More Australians Turned Away from Universities and TAFE in 2003

Thousands of Australians were turned away from further education in 2003 because the Howard Government refused to fund the TAFE and university places Australia needs.

New figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) reveal that unmet demand for a university and TAFE place increased by 6,000 between 2002 and 2003.

The ABS annual survey Education and Work reveals that unmet demand for a university place is up by 2,800 (12 per cent) and 3,200 (8 per cent) for TAFE.

The situation is even worse for 15 to 24 year olds with unmet demand for a university place increasing by 48 per cent and TAFE by 20 per cent.

These new figures are further evidence that Australia urgently needs to expand the number of university and TAFE places. We can’t afford to waste so much young talent.

The situation in 2004 will be even worse because applications for university are up by over 4,000, as students rush to beat the Howard Government’s 25 per cent fee hike.

The Howard Government unfair university changes further compound the problem because universities are required to cut as many as 5,000 places by 2006.

We can’t afford to go denying thousands of young people the chance to further their education - it may be Howard’s way but its not the Australian way.

Labor will end the Howard era of lost opportunity by creating 20,000 extra university places and 20,000 extra TAFE places each year.

More info: Shannon Rees 0438 950 375 10 December 2003