Government unveils findings of education pathways review

Following months of feedback and consultations with our members, VCCI’s Policy and Advocacy Team has helped shape the future of Victoria’s education system for students and businesses.


In May of 2020, the Victorian Chamber put forward its comprehensive submission to the Victorian Government’s review into Vocational and Applied Learning Pathways in Secondary Schooling.

Click here to download a PDF of our full submission to the Victorian government.

Extensive member feedback informed our submission, including a special survey and direct industry consultations. The Chamber also participated as a member of a reference group established to assist the Review Chair, John Firth.

The State’s review into the education system and employment pathways began in late 2019 and has culminated in a final report which has now been publicly released, together with the Government’s response to the review’s recommendations.

In principle, the Victorian Government has supported all the recommendations put forward by the review and has already invested $38 million as part of the 2020-21 Victorian State Budget to develop a new vocational pathway within the Victorian Certificate of Education (VCE) to support students access high-quality vocational and applied learning pathways.

Key recommendations

The year-long review has uncovered major changes are required in order to ensure all Victorian students have access to the highest quality of vocational training which not only embraces their strengths and interests, but also provides students with the skills they need.

Aligning with VCCI’s submission, the final report’s key recommendations include:

Victoria should move to an integrated senior secondary certificate with vocational education embedded in the VCE.

Our submission supported the creation of an integrated certificate to replace the existing standalone VCAL certificate. By doing so, this will give students the much-needed opportunity to develop both academic and practical skills.

Vocational and VET training should be more closely aligned with Victoria’s growth sectors and local industry needs.

As future labour market needs do not divide neatly into knowledge based or manual skills categories, our submission indicated a new framework of training should be available to every senior secondary student that provides relevant skills for the future.

A new Foundation Pathways Certificate should be created to formally recognise the skills and achievements of students who are not ready to complete Year 12.

Our submission indicated this will support students to make successful post-school transitions. This will be particularly important for students with a disability and additional needs, and for students experiencing personal challenges.

All students who fully or partially complete vocational and applied learning subjects should receive an enhanced Statement of Results to provide a full picture of their strengths, capabilities and achievements when they finish school.

Our submission recognises that everyone has different strengths in different areas. For example, some are more hands on than others and vice versa. This doesn’t mean ‘intelligence’ in an academic classroom is superior to someone in a wood working class.

Schools should receive more support to deliver vocational and applied learning.

Our submission indicated this can be achieved through improving the capability of teachers and reducing operational and administrative burdens on schools.

Advocacy and support

For more information on the Victorian Chamber’s advocacy , visit the Policy and Advocacy section of our website.

If you have any questions or would like to be involved in our advocacy work, please contact

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