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Beyond the Bale : September 2014
38 ON FARM Adequate numbers of highly skilled professional staff to harvest and handle a high quality Australian wool clip in a timely manner are key to the profitability of the Australian wool industry. In 2013/14 AWI funded training for shearers and wool handlers across a range of skill development activities. These included from learner to professional shearers and from novice to professional wool handlers. Provided by registered training organisations (RTOs), the training focused on shearers and wool handlers in the shed, particularly on increasing their productivity and skill development. Training was also offered as short term, intensive ‘schools’ across a range of skill levels. In 2013/14, AWI investment in both promotion and recruitment of shearers and wool handlers, as well as training resulted in significant increases in numbers trained at all levels. 2269 training visits were made by shearers (a 44 per cent increase from 2012/13) and 1320 training visits were made by wool handlers (a 34 per cent increase from 2012/13) directly through AWI-funded programs across Australia in 2013/14, with an additional 781 training visits by participants in crutching and other shearing and woolhandling workshops. These workshops serve an important role in providing a range of training services to the wool industry – from an introduction to wool harvesting and basic skills for new shearers and wool handlers, through improver to advanced and professional workshops for continued development of wool harvesting professionals. In addition to these training numbers, 739 high school students received an introduction to wool harvesting as a career option through in-school and in-shed demonstrations by AWI- funded trainers. An Independent Coaching Program was also introduced to complement the RTO trainers. This new program provides AWI with a direct involvement in the employment of trainers, and is a cost effective way of the providing training. This program is renowned for its pioneering use of iPads in shearing training. Consistency workshops for more than 100 trainers from across the country were conducted by AWI in 2013/14 at Wagga Wagga (NSW) and Katanning (WA). These workshops for the trainers of shearers and wool handlers help provide consistency in the way training takes place and to promote best practice across the wool industry. In the 2013/14 financial year, AWI investment in both promotion and recruitment of shearers and wool handlers, as well as training, resulted in a 30 per cent increase in numbers trained compared to last year. INCREASED SHEARER AND WOOL HANDLER TRAINING MORE INFORMATION To find out how to access wool training in your state, phone 1800 SHEARS. www.wool.com/shearertraining 2269 training visits were made by shearers and 1320 training visits made by wool handlers directly through the AWI shearer and wool handler training program. An additional 781 participants attended crutching and other introductory workshops, and 739 high school students received an introduction to wool harvesting. * Plus 739 school students in WA were provided with an introduction to the wool har vesting industry by AWI-funded coaches through in-shed or at school demonstrations of shearing and woolhandling **ICP – Independent Coaching Program SHEARER AND WOOL HANDLER TRAINING ACTIVITIES NSW WA VIC SA QLD TAS ICC** 2013/14 TOTAL 2012/13 TOTAL In-shed shearer coaching Days 21710517760505054 713 533 Number trained 663 398 545 217 165 108 173 2269 1571 In-shed wool handler coaching Days 15935130605040 5 479 359 Number trained 440 110 429 152 98 85 6 1320 983 Crutching schools; Novice, improver S&WH workshops; Shearing industry vocational education in schools; Advanced shearing schools; Industry funded enrolment assistance Number of schools/days 9816454281944 0 407 305 Number of attendees 152 304* 132 69 13 111 0 781 786 Total training days provided 474 304 361 148 119 134 59 1599 1197 Total number coached/trained 1255 812* 1106 438 276 304 179 4370 3340