The inquiry into work to school transition
On 31 May 2017, the Standing Committee on Employment, Education and Training launched a new inquiry into School to Work Transition. The Committee was asked to inquire into and report on how students are supported from school to work, including:
- Measurements of gain in school and how this contributes to supporting students to prepare for post-school education and training, and
- Opportunities to better inform and support students in relation to post-school education and training, including use of employment outcomes of students who undertake school-based vocational education or post-school tertiary pathways.
Submissions closed on 31 July 2017. The inquiry is still continuing.
The Refugee Council of Australia would like to formally endorse the submission of the Multicultural Youth Advocacy Network (MYAN) to this inquiry.
Our research, and the experiences of our members, highlight that while newly arrived communities are eager to gain employment, they face a number of systemic barriers. A key way to address these barriers is by supporting the transition of young people from education into work.
The MYAN submission highlights a number of these barriers, and puts forward sound recommendations to address them. In particular, it advocates for an appropriate school to work transition strategy which is targeted to meet the unique needs of young people from refugee and migrant backgrounds. Programs for refugee and migrant young people should focus on:
- Access to targeted and appropriate English-language learning, including a range of models responsive to age and proficiency. This is to ensure educational engagement and facilitate successful transitions to training, higher education and employment.
- Bridging support for educational transitions.
- Support for parent/carer engagement in young people’s educational journey.
- More targeted support for the transition from education/training to employment.
- Developing young people’s social capital and networks, with a focus on building links with industry and potential employers. Consideration should be given to the benefits of mentor programs and work placements.