Department of Education, Skills and Employment

The Australian Department of Education, Skills and Employment (DESE) is a department of the Government of Australia, formed on 1 February 2020 from the merger of the Department of Education and Department of Employment, Skills, Small and Family Business.[3][4]

Department of Education, Skills and Employment
Department of Education, Skills and Employment Logo.png
50 Marcus Clarke Street Feb 2016.jpg
The national office of the Department of Education, Skills and Employment, 50 Marcus Clarke Street, Canberra.
Department overview
Formed1 February 2020 (2020-02-01)[1]
Preceding agencies
JurisdictionCommonwealth of Australia
Ministers responsible
Department executive
Child Department
  • Shared Services Centre

The department "works to ensure Australians can experience the wellbeing and economic benefits that quality education, skills and employment provide." Its primary focus is "to equip Australians — at all life and career stages — with knowledge, skills and attributes to live well, thrive at work and contribute to community life."[5]

The head of the department is the Secretary of the DESE, currently Dr Michele Bruniges AM,[2] who reports to the Minister for Education and Youth, currently the Hon. Alan Tudge MP, and the Minister for Employment, Workforce, Skills, Small and Family Business, currently the Hon. Stuart Robert MP.


The department was formed by way of an Administrative Arrangements Order issued on 5 December 2019, effective from 1 February 2020.[3] It was merged from the:

Preceding departmentsEdit

The DESE's predecessor education departments have been:

The DESE's predecessor employment departments have been:

Operational activitiesEdit

The functions of the department are broadly classified into the following matters:[3]

  • Employment policy, including employment services
  • Jobactive
  • Labour market programmes for people of working age
  • Co-ordination of labour market research
  • Equal employment opportunity
  • Work and family programmes
  • Participation, activity test and compliance policy for participation payment recipients
  • Reducing the burden of government regulation
  • Skills and vocational education policy regulation and programmes, including vocational education and training in schools
  • Training, including apprenticeships and training and skills assessment services
  • Training transitions policy and programmes
  • Foundation skills for adults
  • Schools education policy and programmes
  • Education transitions policy and programmes
  • Pre-school education policy and programmes
  • Higher education policy, regulation and programmes
  • Policy, coordination and support for international education and research engagement
  • Co-ordination of research policy in relation to universities
  • Creation and development of research infrastructure
  • Research grants and fellowships
  • Childcare policy and programmes
  • Co-ordination of early childhood development policy and responsibilities

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "Administrative Order Arrangements" (PDF). Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet. Commonwealth of Australia. Retrieved 2 June 2019.
  2. ^ a b "Our Executive". Department of Education, Skills and Employment. Commonwealth of Australia. Retrieved 14 August 2020.
  3. ^ a b c "Administrative Arrangements Order made on 5 December 2019 with effect from 1 February 2020". Australian Government. Archived from the original on 3 February 2020. Retrieved 14 February 2020.
  4. ^ "Scott Morrison to sack top bureaucrats and dismantle departments in wide-ranging public sector overhaul". ABC News. 6 December 2019. Retrieved 14 February 2020.
  5. ^ "About Us". Department of Education, Skills and Employment. Retrieved 14 August 2020.

External linksEdit