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The changing context of schooling is examined in this paper in terms of global changes and what impact these are having on the skills young people need to have. In particular, the way work is changing, and the skills and education young people need to have to maximise their economic opportunities is explored. The key issues are that high skill jobs requiring university or high level vocational qualifications now make up the majority of jobs and they are growing at twice the rate of other jobs in Australia. Young people with university or Vocational Education and Training (VET) qualifications (at least Certificate III level) have excellent prospects, whereas those who drop out of school early face much more poor and declining prospects. New approaches to schooling to ensure that most, if not all, young people not only complete a full secondary education, but also go on to attain a tertiary qualification at university or VET are explored in this paper. Research suggests that ëin school’ factors such as improving teacher quality only account for around one-third of the variation in student performances, so these strategies need to encompass wider and more comprehensive approaches to supporting students to remain engaged and to make the right choices.