Release type: Media Release


Extra support for apprentices


The Hon Julia Gillard MP
Deputy Prime Minister
Minister for Education
Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations
Minister for Social Inclusion

Joint Media Release with Senator The Hon Mark Arbib and The Hon Jason Clare MP

Deputy Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, Minister for Employment Participation, Mark Arbib, and Parliamentary Secretary for Employment, Jason Clare, today announced the Australian Government would provide additional support to apprentices both before and during their training to help them secure long-term employment.

Ms Gillard announced the allocation of $20 million to projects that will increase pre-apprenticeship training over the next 18 months under the highly-successful Apprentice Kickstart program.

Pre-apprenticeship programs help Australian students get ahead by providing them with a comprehensive understanding of what is involved in their chosen apprenticeship.

Students are also recognised for work they successfully complete during their pre-apprenticeship program.

All states and territories are working closely with the Australian Government to develop innovative pre-apprenticeship projects.

Senator Arbib said the Government was also providing $10.3 million for mentoring services to help apprentices through to the end of their training and into secure jobs.

“This funding is an important component of our highly-successful Apprentice Kickstart program which has helped businesses employ about 24,400 young apprentices in the three months over summer. A new phase will run for another six months – from May to 12 November,” Senator Arbib said.

“In last week’s Budget the Government announced a further $80 million to support businesses to take on a further 22,500 young apprentices. The Apprentice Kickstart bonus more than triples the commencement bonus for young apprentices from $1,500 to $4,850.

“The next step is to ensure we keep these apprentices motivated all the way through their training and this new mentoring funding will help achieve this.”

Parliamentary Secretary for Employment Jason Clare said the Government would be seeking proposals from Australian Apprenticeships Centres to deliver targeted mentoring services to Kickstart Apprentices.

“We believe that better preparation and extra support throughout an apprenticeship will see more people finishing their training and ending up in good jobs.

“Lifting the retention rates of apprentices will also assist the Australian economy meet the demand for a skilled and dynamic workforce,” Mr Clare said.

Funding for pre-apprenticeships is subject to final agreement on implementation plans with states and territories as required under the Apprentice Kickstart Pre-Apprenticeship National Partnership.

Further information about Pre-Apprenticeship Training Opportunities is available at: