Agricultural Education

Agricultural Education

Agreed to by the VFF Policy Council 

Meeting 177 

7 September 2022 

Policy Statement 

General Principles 

1.The VFF believes agricultural education and skills training must be a key focus of government industry policy to ensure farmers are able to improve their knowledge and skills, and to have access to a highly skilled workforce, to improve productivity and contribute to the growth of industry.

2.The VFF believes agricultural education must be supported through a working collaboration between industry, government, education providers and teachers. The VFF’s objective is to provide leadership on behalf of industry as part of this collaboration to ensure the issues that matter to farm businesses are considered.

3.The VFF believes that all agricultural education and skills training must be relevant to the requirements of farm business and industry. Industry must be provided the opportunity to provide direct feedback to subject and course providers to ensure the ongoing supply of job ready graduates.


4.The VFF believes agricultural education in schools must be focussed on promoting

the agricultural industry to generate community understanding of, and empathy

towards farmers and the agricultural sector.

5.The VFF believes agricultural education options must be provided in the school curriculum topromote the diversity of employment opportunities in the agriculture industry, and that course content be relevant to the requirements of industry, farm businesses and further education providers.

6.The VFF supports current students receiving adequate information about career paths in agriculture and supports careers counsellors being given adequate resources to promote jobs in agriculture.

7.The VFF supports the creation of a dedicated public agricultural high school in Victoria (such asNSW’s Yanco Agricultural High School) to increase the quantity of skilled agricultural students.

8. The VFF believes government must provide greater support to attract specialist agriculture teachers to the profession, as well as increasing the awareness and understanding of agricultural

issues amongst general teaching staff to ensure the ongoing quality of teaching in agricultural subjects. 

9.The VFF believes government must better promote the availability of the Agricultural andHorticultural Studies subject as part of the Victorian Certificate of Education (VCE) to all students to increase the uptake of agriculture studies in secondary schools.

10.The VFF believes government must better promote the availability of the Agriculture,Horticulture, Conservation and Ecosystem Management subject as part of the Victorian Certificate ofEducation Vocational Education and Training (VCE VET) program to all students to increase the uptake of agriculture studies and practical work-related training in secondary schools.


11.The VFF supports the inclusion of agricultural courses under the Victorian Government’s FreeTAFE program to encourage the uptake of practical agricultural education and skills training.

12.The VFF believes agricultural course TAFE teachers should have practical industry experience.Farmers should be encouraged to become TAFE teachers to ensure training is relevant to the needs of farm businesses and industry.

13.The VFF believes agricultural course TAFE teachers should be supported to maintain up to date knowledge on the contemporary requirements of industry and best practice.

Higher Education 

14.The VFF believes agricultural and related subjects should be taught at regionally located universities to ensure direct and equitable access for regional students.

15.The VFF supports the creation of partnerships between universities and the agriculture industry to ensure agricultural graduates have streamlined access to career opportunities.

16.The VFF believes universities must engage in more effective promotion of their agricultural courses to drive enrolments and increase the number of skilled agricultural graduates.


17.The VFF believes Registered Training Organisations delivering agricultural studies should only have to reapply for government funding periodically rather than every year if their courses have already demonstrated to be producing effective learning outcomes, to save on administrative burden and costs.

18.The VFF believes the Certificate IV in Training and Assessment should continue to be subsidised for those working at Registered Training Organisations as it is for those employed at TAFE colleges, to ensure the high quality of teaching delivered at Registered Training Organisations and in particular for agricultural course providers.

19.The VFF believes that agricultural colleges as Registered Training Organisations should receive capital building funding commensurate to TAFE campuses through regular capital expenditure funding to maintain and improve assets.