The P-TECH pilot is an innovative model of education–industry collaboration that provides students studying for their Senior Secondary Certificate of Education with an industry-supported pathway to a diploma, advanced diploma, or associate degree in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).
On 30 May 2016, the Government announced a $4.6 million expansion of the P-TECH pilot to twelve additional sites across Australia. This builds upon the $0.5 million investment in two P-TECH schools currently operating in Victoria at Newcomb Secondary College in Geelong and Federation College, Ballarat .
The pilot will enable the Government to test and adapt the P-TECH model in different jurisdictions and school systems, and provide a catalyst for greater industry engagement with schools.
In addition to the two P-TECH schools currently operating in Victoria at Newcomb Secondary College, Geelong, and Federation College, Ballarat, the program will be trialled in 12 other schools across Australia, with seven pilot sites already selected:
- McCarthy Catholic College, Western Sydney, New South Wales
- Wyong High School, Central Coast, New South Wales
- Hunter River High School, Hunter Valley, New South Wales
- St Patrick's Technical College, Northern Adelaide, South Australia
- Cecil Andrews College, South Perth, Western Australia
- Tec-NQ, Townsville, Queensland
- combined P-TECH at Burnie High School and Parklands High School, Tasmania.
The remaining five sites will be determined in consultation with state and territory governments, non-government school authorities, and industry. Implementation of the pilot will be phased, with five sites starting in 2017, and others in 2018 and 2019.
The P-TECH pilot involves establishing long-term partnerships between industry, schools, and tertiary education providers that enable businesses to play an active role in the learning and career development of their future workforce.
This includes mentoring and providing pathways from school to further education, training, and employment, including opportunities for employment with the school's industry partners.
The P-TECH model features opportunities for students to connect and build relationships with industry partners, and engage in hands-on, project-based learning, both at school and in the workplace. These experiences will help students to make informed decisions about their future careers and pathways.
The Australian Government is working with the Skilling Australia Foundation to expand the Australian P-TECH pilot.