St Patrick’s Technical College is South Australia’s first P-TECH school, part of a $4.3 million pilot project supported by the Australian Government. Partnering with the College in the P-TECH program is the Defence Teaming Centre.

The P-TECH pilot will draw on many elements that exist in St Patrick’s Technical College today such as mentoring, workplace visits and industry collaboration. The P-TECH program brings all these elements together and focuses on building a long-term partnership between the our educators, employers and community.

From 2017 our P-TECH partnership will see technical staff from the world’s leading defence industry employers working alongside our teachers and students to design and collaborate on projects rich with industry specific skills.

What is P-TECH?

Screen-Shot-2016-08-09-at-11.09.58-am-212x300P-TECH is about collaboration – a partnership between education, industry and community – but a partnership with a clear purpose:

To provide an industry supported pathway for young people to achieve a qualification that strengthens their employment prospects.

To achieve this requires the education, industry and community sectors working together to put in place the key elements of P-TECH:

> Innovative curriculum
A key aspect of designing the learning program includes the way existing Australian Curriculum and Australian Qualification Framework recognised education and training is sequenced (or ordered) to achieve the best outcomes for students.

> Innovative approaches to learning
Partnerships between schools and industry enable innovative approaches to the way learning is delivered; approaches that would not be possible if schools, or industry, acted in isolation. Working together, schools and industry can provide opportunities for students to engage with the world of work and better understand the relevance of their learning to jobs and post-school pathways.

> Industry mentoring and support
The mentor relationship between young people and industry personnel provides continuity of support for students to achieve a post-school qualification. The mentor relationship will ensure the students’ learning stays on track and provides opportunities for guidance to help young people make informed decisions regarding their education, training and employment options.

> A post-school qualification
P-TECH schools partner with other education providers (TAFEs/RTOs or universities) to deliver elements of the P-TECH learning program (either on-site or off-site) and achieve a diploma, advanced diploma or associate degree. A strong relationship between the school, industry and post-school institution(s) will provide a seamless pathway and continuity of support for students as they transition from school to further education to complete their post-school qualification.

> Links to employment
Collaboration between the education and industry sectors strengthens the connection between student learning and the skills that employers need. It improves young people’s prospects of employment, including opportunities for employment with industry partners.

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Why is the Australian Government supporting P-TECH?

mast-headshotA video message from Senator the Hon. Simon Birmingham, Minister for Education & Training

Ensuring future generations of young Australians have the skills to equip them for the workforce of the 21st century is critical for maximising our economic and social well-being in an increasingly global and digital age.

Globalisation, economic reforms and technological improvements are changing the nature of work and the types of jobs that will be available in the future – and science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) skills will play a major role.

In order to have young people entering the labour market with the capability to meet the growing demand for workers with STEM skills, we need to increase the number of students undertaking STEM studies in senior secondary school, and then in post-secondary education and training.

Partnerships between schools and industry provide opportunities for students to engage with the world of work and better understand the relevance of their learning to jobs and post-school pathways. The STEM focused P-TECH pilot will test and adapt key elements of this innovative approach to educationindustry collaboration in the Australian

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dtcBecoming a P-TECH industry partner

The P-TECH model allows industry to have valuable involvement in the learning and development of young Australians to ensure that they are entering the labour market with the skills they need to succeed at work.

There are many forms of support industry can provide including but not limited to:

  • ibm_logoworking with teachers to align classroom learning to the skills employers need;
  • providing opportunities for hands-on workplace learning;
  • supporting authentic project-based learning (either in the workplace or at school);
  • offering mentor support for students
  • enabling access to the latest technologies used by industry
  • providing traineeships, apprenticeships or internships as part of the P-TECH program

With the assistance of industry, the P-TECH program ensures students will enter the labour market with the skills to succeed.

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P-TECH Quick Facts

  • In January 2016, Australia’s first 2 P-TECH pilots commenced in Ballarat and Geelong, Victoria.
  • All of the more than 80 year 9 students at Newcomb Secondary College (Geelong) are participating in the first year of the P-TECH pilot.
  • At Federation College (Ballarat), over 20 students are actively involved in a dedicated P-TECH learning program. Other year 10 students from Federation College are
    undertaking P-TECH STEM based electives.
  • The first USA P-TECH school was established by IBM and a consortia of education partners in 2011 in New York City.
  • Jobs requiring STEM skills grew at about 1.5 times the rate of other jobs over the past few years.
  • Nearly 44% of Australian workplaces that require STEM skills have trouble recruiting qualified technicians and trade workers, according to the Australian Industry Group.

For further information, visit www.ptech.org.au

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