TAFE SA to maintain its presence at Urrbrae as campus transition plan is finalised

TAFE SA will maintain its presence at the Urrbrae Campus and continue its delivery of horticulture training, after meeting its required savings targets for the site and completing a review of how its training offering can be best delivered.

The announcement comes after the Government announced a further $25.2 million injection into TAFE SA in this year's budget, as well as an additional $1.6 million to recognise delays in the training provider meeting its existing efficiency measures.

TAFE SA also signed a memorandum of understanding this week with the Independent Tertiary Education Council Australia that could see independent training providers given more access to publicly owned sites and resources, and vice versa. The move is expected to bring renewed opportunities for TAFE in maintaining its presence at Urrbrae.

TAFE SA plans to optimise and consolidate the space required for its continued delivery of training at the Urrbrae Campus and will meet its savings targets by allocating underutilised space to the Urrbrae Agricultural High School, which is co-located at the site.

TAFE SA's broader transition plan will also see all community services, health and lifestyle programs remain at the Port Adelaide campus until January 2020, allowing for a purpose-built 'Health and Wellness Precinct' to be constructed at the Adelaide City Campus.

All other courses with a substantive work program being delivered at the Port Adelaide campus will move to either the Adelaide City or Regency campuses.

TAFE SA will continue to deliver training in the Port Adelaide area through locations such as council facilities, local community centres, local schools, the Adelaide Business Hub and Port Adelaide and Woodville Football Clubs.

TAFE SA will also maintain a presence at its Roxby Downs, Wudinna and Coober Pedy campuses.

In Roxby Downs, TAFE SA will reduce its presence on the site to fulfil an urgent demand for more student space from the local school, with the workshop space remaining available to deliver training for both the school and community.

TAFE SA will maintain its presence at the Coober Pedy campus by minimising its existing footprint and will continue to share the workshop and hospitality facilities with the Coober Pedy Area School.

The Wudinna Campus will be made widely available to the community for use as required, including providing access to a high-quality internet connection for the area.

Community Liaison Officers will provide a visible presence in the community at all three regional sites and training will continue to be delivered flexibly off-campus.

Education Minister John Gardner said the Government was focused on supporting TAFE to become more competitive as a training provider.

"We are focused on supporting TAFE to meet the needs of both South Australians seeking the skills they need to build their careers and the local industry that is seeking a skilled workforce," said Minister Gardner.

"This announcement allows TAFE to continue to deliver specialist courses on sites where they can be best delivered, while reducing and consolidating underutilised spaces.

"We have always maintained that some level of training would be likely to continue at the Urrbrae campus. Strong support from industry, as well as TAFE's new focus on partnerships, has given rise to more opportunities and made maintaining a significant permanent presence at the site a viable option which we are now pleased to confirm.

"The construction of a Health and Wellness Precinct at TAFE's city campus has the potential to provide more opportunities for students due to its proximity to the Royal Adelaide Hospital and new Women's and Children's Hospital.

"We remain committed to supporting TAFE to have a presence in the community across the state and training will continue to be delivered flexibly off-campus to better meet demand.

"The previous Labor Government's oversight of TAFE failed staff, students and the people of South Australia. We are turning this around as we give TAFE the fresh start it needs to deliver quality programs for students and industry.

"The Marshall Liberal Government has injected more than $135 million of additional funding into TAFE SA over our first two budgets to support the organisation becoming an efficient and effective training provider that students and industry have full confidence in.

"At the same time, we have demonstrated our support for the training sector more broadly through Minister Pisoni's $200 million Skilling South Australia fund, supporting 20,000 new apprenticeships and traineeships. This is a critical area of public policy neglected for too long by our Labor predecessors."

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