Our department

The Department of Education and Training is the Australian Government’s lead agency responsible for helping Australians access flexible, high-quality early childhood, school, international and higher education, research and vocational education and training.

The department works to provide opportunity through learning for everyone.

The department’s national policies and programmes support:

  • a world-class early childhood learning and school education system that is based on teacher quality, school autonomy, engaging parents in education and strengthening the Australian Curriculum, which can have a significant impact on student outcomes
  • higher education and research so that Australia excels through knowledge, by enabling the delivery of quality higher education, international education, and research opportunities that contribute to Australia’s society and the global economy
  • a responsive vocational education and training (VET) sector delivering the skills that employers need for their workforce.

The department collaborates closely with a range of stakeholders, such as other Australian Government agencies, state and territory governments, individually and through forums such as the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) and non-government education bodies.

The department’s responsibilities changed as a result of the Administrative Arrangements Order that took effect on 23 December 2014. In addition to the transfer of functions, the department’s name also changed from the Department of Education to the Department of Education and Training.

Prior to publishing, on 21 September 2015 the department’s responsibilities changed as a result of an Administrative Arrangements Order. Resulting ministerial and organisational changes have not been included in this report as these took effect in the 2015–16 financial year.

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