6272.0 - Participation in Education, Australia, Sep 1998  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 28/04/1999   
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April 28, 1999
Embargoed: 11:30 AM (AEST)
Over half of 15 to 24 year olds in education - ABS

More than half (51%) of Australia's 15 to 24 year old population of 2,639,000 were participating in education at September 1998, compared to 49% in 1993, according to the results of an ABS survey released today.

Some 1,356,000 students were either attending a school (693,000), a higher education institution (403,000), a TAFE (210,000) or were among the 49,000 who attended courses run by business colleges, industry skills centres or other educational institutions.

The number of students in this age group has risen by 24,000 since 1993, despite a drop of 71,000 in the total population for the age group over the same period.

The 662,000 15 to 24 year olds attending tertiary education in September 1998 was a decrease of 31,000 over the September 1997 figure. This resulted in an education participation rate of 25%, a fall of one percentage point. Part-time attendance was most affected, down by 23,000, while full-time attendance decreased by 8,000.

Persons born overseas continued to have a higher education participation rate (62%) than persons born in Australia (49%). The relatively high rate for persons born overseas is mainly a reflection of the very high levels of participation in education by persons born in Asia - those born in Northeast Asia had a participation rate of 91%, and the rates for those born in Southeast Asia and Southern Asia were around 72%. These high rates are at least partly attributable to overseas students studying in Australia.

402,000 tertiary students, or 61% of the total, had previously attended government schools. At higher education institutions this figure was 213,000 (53%) and at TAFEs 153,000 (72%).

Females outnumbered males by 34,000 at higher education institutions. The reverse was true at TAFE where 54,000 more males than females were enrolled.

Full details are published in Participation in Education (Persons Aged 15 to 24), Australia (cat. no. 6272.0) available at all ABS bookshops. A summary of the publication's main findings may be found on this site.