In Australia, the term Foundation Skills has appeared in a number of policy environments, including in COAG targets, Victorian Skills Reforms and federal budgets. The term has not been clearly defined and has at times been used interchangeably with other terms including: Core Skills, Basic Skills, Generic Skills, Essential Skills and Language, Literacy and Numeracy.
The definition of Foundation Skills that encompasses the skill described by the Australian Core Skills Framework (ACSF) and those included in Employability Skills are:
- Oral Communication
- Problem solving Initiative and enterprise
- Planning and organizing
In April 2011, the National Quality Council agreed to develop a Foundation Skills Training Package as part of a national, systemic approach to developing foundation skills units of competency, qualifications and skill sets. The package will align with agreed principles and look at how streamlined Training Packages can improve foundation skills.
A systemic national approach will provide:
- National standards for foundation skills training
- More pathways into vocational qualifications
- Options for foundation skills units that can be used across Training Packages or embedded within qualifications
- Options to mix and match products and training practices to suit individual learner needs.
DEEWR funded the Innovation and Business Skills Australia (IBSA) to undertake the development of a nationally endorsed Foundation Skills Training Package.
IBSA developed Foundation Skills qualifications at AQF Certificate I and II level that can be integrated with existing vocationally oriented units to provide training relevant to each industry. The qualifications will encourage the development of the underpinning skills that are required for undertaking further vocational training, and will be clearly designed as learning pathways, not for specific occupational outcomes. Enabling and preparatory pathways provided by these qualifications will assist young people, adults without any post-compulsory qualifications and those who have had a ling break from learning or formal training.
This comprehensive and easy-to-use Workplace English Language and Literacy (WELL) resource kit is mapped up to Level 3 against the Australian Core Skills Framework, it is contextualised to the Community Services and Health industries, but flexible enough to be used in other industries.
The resource is ideally suited for supporting Core Skills in the workplace without the specific need for a Language, Literacy and Numeracy (LLN) expert.
The Community Services and Health Industry Skills Council WELL Resource Kit is fully self-contained in a sturdy plastic outer case with a rubber handle for easy carrying. The kit includes five smaller plastic satchels, each containing the printed resources.
Each smaller plastic satchel contains training and practice cards for each Core Skill: Learning, Reading, Writing, Oral Communication and Numeracy.
- Workplace trainers