April 8, 2020

VET for secondary school students: post-school employment and further training destinations

This research looks at secondary school students who undertook a VET for Secondary School Students program (hereinafter referred to as VfSSS) in 2011 and investigates whether they are in work and/or further studies five years later (2016), and the extent to which their VfSSS studies are linked to these employment and study destinations. The study uses an integrated dataset, in which data from the 2011 National VET in Schools Collection are linked to data from the 2016 Census of Population and Housing. It follows on from a similar exercise in 2017, whereby 2006 data from the National VET in Schools Collection were linked to the 2011 census. In doing so it enables us to update our earlier research questions with more recent information.

Having both these datasets available has meant that researchers have had access to a large number of observations on the destinations of VfSSS students from various demographic, cultural and educational backgrounds, including their employment and further training destinations and experiences.

Researchers also undertook an exploratory analysis of data from the Longitudinal Surveys of Australian Youth (LSAY 2009 commencing cohort) to enable comparisons between VfSSS and non-VfSSS students, in relation to their employment and educational situations between four and five years after undertaking their secondary school studies.

When analysing the LSAY data, it became apparent that caution needs to be exercised when looking at the outcomes of VfSSS and treating them as a homogenous group. A significant proportion (45.2%) of the VfSSS students in the LSAY sample also achieved an ATAR and a preliminary analysis indicated some significant differences between the outcomes of VfSSS students who achieved an ATAR and those that did not achieve an ATAR. Understanding the respective motivations and the type of training programs undertaken for these groups of students and comparing their outcomes are planned for a future study.

NCVER, 2020 – VET for secondary school students- post-school employment and further training destinations