Reporting on TAFE: Changing representations in the print media

Year: 1997

Author: Saltmarsh, David

Type of paper: Abstract refereed

Throughout 1995 TAFE NSW was constantly in the headlines. The stories of internal memoranda that had been leaked, contemplations of the potential disasters of restructuring and threats of industrial action gave the public intimate accounts of this institution and served to make the senior administrators almost household names. However, in the space of two years things have changed. TAFE has virtually disappeared from the headlines. The most senior bureaucrat in NSW TAFE, Jane Diplock, claims that this is a consequence of good management, but a variety of far more likely explanations can be given for TAFE being away out of the media gaze.

This paper presents research findings from a study into print media representations of education and unemployment. 1997 has certainly provided an abundance of issues about education and unemployment for the media to pursue, but, more importantly, the change of media focus indicates a shift in the way that vocational education is understood within the community.