Participation in senior secondary schooling increased substantially between 1980 and the early 1990s, but has been static since that time. Since the mid 1990s curriculum offerings in the senior school years have been broadened in order to cater for a wider range of student interests and aptitudes. The offering of vocational courses in schools has been a prominent component of this curriculum broadening. At the same time, changes have occurred in the post-school VET landscape with rapid growth in traineeships. The labour market context has also changed with a decline in full-time youth employment accompanied by growth in part-time youth employment for both males and females. Policies on youth participation in education and training have emphasised persistence at school or participation in a vocational alternative. Trends in school completion, VET-in-schools participation, post-school VET enrolments and labour force statistics are examined in order to explore possible causal relationships. The immediate post-school destinations of young people who do not complete secondary schooling are examined. For these young people, VET participation is an important component of their transitions between compulsory education and work. For some young people, especially males, post-school VET qualifications ameliorate their lower school completion rates. For others, post-school VET does not provide this compensation. Policy implications are considered.
- Vocational education and training,
- Senior school students,
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/julie_mcmillan/42/