Release type: Joint Media Release


Fee Free TAFE saving Territorians thousands


The Hon Brendan O'Connor MP
Minister for Skills and Training
The Hon Paul Kirby MLA
Northern Territory Minister for Business, Jobs and Training
Luke Gosling OAM, MLA
Member for Solomon

Students are thousands of dollars better off due to Fee-Free TAFE, which is removing cost barriers and helping Territorians get the skills they need to access well-paid and secure jobs.

Students enrolling in key Fee-Free TAFE Courses in the Northern Territory haven’t had to find an extra:

  • $3,220 when enrolling in a Certificate IV in School Based Education Support
  • $2,135 when enrolling in a Certificate III in Community Service
  • $2,835 when enrolling in a Certificate III in Civil Construction Plant Operations
  • $1,645 when enrolling in a Certificate III in Information Technology

Since January, more than 600 students have enrolled in Fee-Free TAFE training places in the NT, helping address future workforce demand and skills shortages.

This is a significant achievement considering the challenges of remote learning in the Northern Territory and we want to continue to build on this work.

The Australian Government is meeting with state and territory counterparts in Darwin today to discuss a proposed $3.7 billion five-year National Skills Agreement, to ensure more access to vocational education and training (VET), with TAFE at the centre.

We are also fundamentally reforming the way the Commonwealth delivers foundation skills programs, as part of the 2023-24 Budget.

This will ensure First Nations Australians and other priority groups have the literacy, numeracy and digital literacy skills to participate fully in training and secure work.

Quotes attributable to Brendan O’Connor, Minister for Skills and Training

Fee-Free TAFE is helping tackle the skills shortages we’re seeing in the Northern Territory, increasing access and reducing cost barriers to high-quality training for anyone who wants new skills for a new career.

We have already made available 180,000 places across the country in 2023, and we’ll invest more than $400 million to support an additional 300,000 Fee-Free places for TAFE and VET from 2024.

The Australian Government is also working to close the gap by reforming foundation skills, so First Nations Australians have the core literacy, numeracy and digital literacy skills to succeed.

Reducing cost of living pressures and ensuring no one is left behind is a key element of the Albanese Government’s plan and central to our Fee-Free TAFE and VET initiative.

Quotes attributable to Paul Kirby, Northern Territory Minister for Business, Jobs and Training

Territorians have embraced Fee-Free TAFE, which will deliver skilled workers to our fast-growing economy.

This joint investment is helping address skills shortages across a range of industries such as such as hospitality, tourism, aged care and agriculture.

I would encourage anyone considering to upskill or reskill to consider applying for one of our Fee-Free TAFE places and improve your chances of getting a secure, well-paid job.