VET FEE-HELP essential for professional arts training

Media Release

ArtsPeak the confederation of Australia’s peak national arts organisations calls on the Federal Government to take more time and consult properly with the arts and creative industries before rushing into changes to the VET FEE-HELP scheme.

ArtsPeak fully supports the Government in its intention to stop the rorting of the VET system by unscrupulous private operators. However, ArtsPeak maintains that this is a different issue from the need to support a diversity of training options, including in the arts, to be delivered by legitimate operators.
Tamara Winikoff OAM, Executive Director of the National Association for the Visual Arts (NAVA) and a spokesperson for ArtsPeak, said:

‘Whilst not all of the courses listed to be excised from the system are defensible, the arts sector challenges the assumption that training in the arts is simply for recreational enjoyment.’

‘Training is just as essential in the arts as in other industries and enables graduates either to establish their own cultural businesses or to be employed by others.’

To ensure that appropriate decisions about changes to the VET FEE-HELP scheme are well founded, ArtsPeak asserts that the industry must be fully consulted before any binding decisions are made. The members of ArtsPeak who represent all art forms are offering their assistance in the consultation process.

ArtsPeak calls on the Education & Training Minister to immediately halt the process so that essential research can be undertaken in order to avoid causing unintended damage to a vitally important industry for Australia.

For media comment please contact ArtsPeak co-convenor

Tamara Winikoff OAM, Executive Director, NAVA 02 9368 1900