National Foundation Skills Workforce Development Project 2013-2014

The 16th May 2013 announcement, by Hon Sharon Bird MP and Hon Grace Portolesi MP, on investment of $1.5m to boost literacy, numeracy and language skills through the Foundation Skills Workforce Development (FSWD) Project marked an exciting time for the VET foundation skills workforce.

TAFE SA is highly honoured to provide the following introduction of the Project.


In 2012, the Standing Council on Tertiary Education Skills and Employment (SCOTESE) Access and Participation Principal Committee (APPC) submitted a Foundation Skills Workforce Development Project proposal to the Department of Industry, Innovation, Climate Change, Science, Research and Tertiary Education (DIICCSRTE). The proposal was approved by DIICCSRTE in May 2013 and a Funding Agreement was entered with South Australia Department of Further Education, Employment, Science and Technology (DFEEST) for the implementation of the Project.

It was agreed by the APPC that South Australia would contract TAFE SA, to take the lead role in developing the Project, and to co-ordinate and implement the Project on their behalf.

The objective of the Project is to support the implementation of the National Foundation Skills Strategy for Adults and to assist jurisdictions in working towards the Strategy target that, by 2022, two thirds of working age Australians will have literacy and numeracy skills at Level 3 or above. Through a collaborative approach, the project will scope, design and implement a package of integrated actions focused on Priority Area Four in the Strategy: to build the capacity of the education and training workforce to deliver foundation skills.

Project Overview

To build the skills of the foundation workforce (including language, literacy and numeracy, adult and community education and vocational education and training practitioners) specified under priority area four of the Strategy.

The Project features the following package of integrated actions:

  • Workforce development projects (4 large projects)
  • Workshops (at least 20) and supporting resources
  • National Foundation Skills Champions Network and E-newsletter
  • Scoping of National Foundation Skills Professional Standards Framework
  • External evaluation
  • Project coordination and implementation


A Project Steering Committee will be formed with representatives from DIICCSRTE, State and Territory Government jurisdictions and the Project management team. The Steering Committee will have a central role in considering aspects of the Project and make recommendations to DIICCSRTE through South Australian Government DFEEST.

TAFE SA will be responsible for project coordination and implementation.

The project team is currently developing Project Work Plans for the Steering Committee’s endorsement. Project activities will be linked and add value to the activities of Foundation Skills professional organisations, industry skills councils and peak bodies.

Upcoming Project activities will be linked to the WELL practitioners’ website and stakeholders’ communication channels. We look forward to Australian WELL Practitioners’ Network’s involvement in future activities to increase foundation skills workforce capacity.

For further details, please contact TAFE SA Project Team members:

Wing-Yin Chan Lee, TAFE SA Educational Manager, FSWD Project Manager

Anita Roberts, FSWD Project Coordinator

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