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Keywords:

  • Trade Training Centres;
  • social investment;
  • school industry partnerships;
  • governmentality;
  • education policy;
  • educational governance;
  • globalisation

ABSTRACT: Prior to its election to office in 2007, the Australian Labor Party announced a commitment to introduce Trade Training Centres (TTCs) into all Australian secondary schools as an initiative of its Education Revolution. TTCs were proposed as a key element of Federal Labor's education and training policy that aimed to manage future risks to Australia's competitiveness in the emerging global economy and to support school-to-employment transitions for young people. This analysis adopts a governmentality framework to conceptualise the Federal Government's introduction of TTCs alternatively as a key strategy for nationalising social investment politics in Australia. The paper draws on recent Australian policy documents to argue that TTCs are social technologies that work to open up social spaces in and around schools for governing relationships between schools and other community stakeholders, particularly businesses and families. The paper concludes by examining policy implications, including those of social justice, for promoting school community partnerships through TTCs.