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  • Vocational Education and Training in Schools

    Vocational Education and Training in Schools (VETiS) programs comprise nationally recognised vocational certificates, which may be integrated within a Victorian Certificate of Education (VCE) or a Victorian Certificate of Applied Learning (VCAL).

    Some VETiS statistics 

    • 249,000 students were enrolled in Vocational Education and Training in Schools (VETiS) programs across Australia in 2011
    • 49,917 students were enrolled in VETiS programs in Victoria, with 68,438 certificate enrolments in 2012 (all education sectors)
    • In the Catholic sector last year, there were 12,814 certificate enrolments in VETiS across the state (or 19 per cent of total enrolments)
    • On average, in 2012, Victorian Catholic schools offered over 20 different VETiS programs
    • Across the state last year, students in our schools had access to nearly 200 different VETiS programs overall.

    Benefits of VETiS for students 

    • Gain a national qualification that contributes towards your senior secondary certificate (VCE or VCAL)
    • Be able to explore different career options and pathways
    • Acquire industry specific skills through your studies and workplace learning
    • Develop personal skills and attributes that can enhance your employability
    • Get a better understanding of the world of work and become more ‘work ready’.

    Benefits of VETiS for employers 

    • contributes to the development of entry level skills for their industry
    • provides students with a practical and focused introduction to workplace requirements
    • enhances the employability of students
    • enables industry to contribute to educational programs in schools
    • enables industry to participate in local community networks.

    How does VET contribute to the VCAL? 

    VET contributes to the VCAL through satisfying the requirements of the Industry Specific Skills or Work Related Skills strands. One credit is awarded on successful completion of 90 nominal hours of accredited curriculum. For more details, please refer to the VCAA VCE and VCAL Administrative Handbook.

    How does VET contribute to the VCE? 

    VET may contribute to the VCE at Units 1 and 2 level, or Units 3 and 4 level.

    How is VETiS undertaken as part of the VCE/VCAL? 

    There are three ways to undertake VETiS:

    1. VCE VET Programs
    2. VCE VET programs are vocational training programs approved by the VCAA, following consultation with schools, industry and training providers. These programs lead to nationally recognised qualifications and provide credit towards the VCE or VCAL. A list of VCE VET programs (including the programs that offer Scored Assessment).

    3. Apprenticeships and Traineeships
    4. Students can undertake an apprenticeship or traineeship while still at school as either:

      • a school-based apprentice or trainee
      • a part-time apprentice or trainee.
    5. Apprenticeships and traineeships provide credit towards the VCE or VCAL.
    6. School-based Apprenticeships and Traineeships are available in many industry areas and allow students undertaking the VCE or VCAL to be employed part-time while completing a VET qualification. Students are released from school for a minimum of one day per week to undertake training and/or paid employment. Refer to pages 13 and 14 for more information.

      Part-time Apprenticeships and Traineeships involve students undertaking an apprenticeship or traineeship that is not integrated into their school timetable.

    7. Block Credit Recognition
    8. Students who undertake Vocational Education and Training (VET) or Further Education (FE) qualifications that are not included in the suite of VCAA approved VCE VET programs and School-based Apprenticeships and Traineeships, may be eligible for credit towards their VCE. This credit is called Block Credit Recognition. To be eligible for credit, the student must be enrolled in the VCE. For details of Block Credit Recognition, please refer to the VCAA website.

      Credit is awarded in the VCE on the basis of achieving units of competency. Credit is determined by the Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) level and the nominal hours of the units of competency. Qualifications from the following industry areas are examples of where students can receive Block Credit Recognition: Hairdressing, Beauty, Plumbing, Carbon Management, Public Safety, Events.

    VCAA VET Resources and Information for Schools

    Please note that as VCE VET programs are constantly being developed or revised, schools are advised to refer to the VCAA website and VCAA Bulletins for the most up-to-date information. For more details about VET, and how VET contributes to the VCE and VCAL, please refer to:

    For current information about other VET qualifications that are not part of the suite of VCE VET programs approved by the VCAA, please refer to Training.gov.au (TGA).

    VCAA VET Team Contact Details

    Please contact the VCAA VET Unit for enquiries on: VCE VET programs and School-based Apprenticeships and Traineeships, obtaining program booklets and assessment guides for VCE VET programs, implementing VCE VET programs, sources of information and support for schools, the level of recognition for VCE VET programs in the VCE, professional learning for VCE VET programs, processes for the approval of new VCE VET programs, and other VET programs delivered as part of a senior secondary certificate.

    School-based Apprenticeships and Traineeships (SBATs)

    A School-based Apprenticeship and Traineeship combines:

    • part-time, practical experience in the workplace
    • recognised, structured training with a Registered Training Organisation (RTO)
    • school studies.

    School-based Apprenticeships and Traineeships are open to students 15 years of age or over who are an Australian Citizen or a permanent resident.

    Note: Other visa categories may also be eligible. Please check with an Australian Apprenticeship Centre in your local area.

    School-based Apprenticeships or Traineeships in Victoria involve the student undertaking the VCE or VCAL as well as being employed part-time and trained under the following arrangements:

    The student is required to:

    • be undertaking the VCE or VCAL
    • have paid employment under an industrial agreement that recognises School-based Apprenticeships and Traineeships. In effect the employer will be either:
      • covered by an Award with suitable provisions
      • party to a workplace agreement, including Individual Transitional Employment Agreements, Australian Workplace Agreements, collective agreements, or pre-reform certified agreements
      • covered by the minimum terms and conditions of Part 21 of the Workplace Relations Act. For more information visit Further Education and Training on the Department of Education and Early Childhood Development (DEECD) website
      • have a training contract that includes a nationally recognised qualification and duration of training to be undertaken. This contract must be registered with the Higher Education and Skills Group (DEECD)
    • have a training plan and be signed with an RTO within two months of commencement of the School-based Apprenticeship and Traineeship
    • undertake training over two years at an average of 13 hours per week for employment and training per week. This 13 hours should be divided into at least seven hours of employment and six hours of training per week which may be averaged over three periods of four months in each year of the program
    • spend at least one timetabled day during the normal school week on the job or in training.

    The school’s role is to:

    • endorse the training plan for a school-based apprentice or trainee when it forms an integral part of the student's school learning program and study timetable. It must be verified that during term time, a student's timetable indicates that a minimum of one day of the school week during normal school is spent in employment and/or structured training as an apprentice or trainee
    • sign the student's training plan to acknowledge that the student is enrolled in a senior secondary program such as the VCE or VCAL
    • endorse the training plan for a school-based apprentice or trainee if the above criteria have been met. Endorsement of the training plan by the school will indicate that it is undertaking responsibility to enrol the student on VASS so that credit for the training within the VCE or VCAL can be awarded to the student.

    Training and assessment are the responsibility of the RTO.

    The VCAA VET Unit has provided advice that where there is an existing VCE VET program, and students are undertaking a School-based Apprenticeship or Traineeship in that industry area, there will be an equivalent volume of credit into the VCE. Schools are advised to contact the VCAA VET Unit for further clarification on matters related to credit towards the VCE.

    School-based Apprenticeships and Traineeships are also available in other industry areas for which the Higher Education and Skills Group (DEECD) has approved funding. Visit the DEECD website for more information on funding eligibility.

    School-based Apprenticeships and Traineeships in other industry areas may also contribute to the VCE through Block Credit Recognition. For more information on Block Credit Recognition see the VCAA website.

    Part-time Apprenticeships and Traineeships

    Students who undertake an apprenticeship or traineeship that is not integrated into their learning program and study timetable will be undertaking part-time apprenticeships or traineeships. This type of arrangement will still provide credit for VCE or VCAL if it is recorded on VASS.

    Student enrolments in VET in the VCE, VET Block Credit programs and SBATs in Victorian Catholic schools have grown across a broad range of industry. The largest numbers of enrolments are in Hospitality; Building and Construction; Sport and Recreation; Automotive Studies; Media; Hairdressing and Beauty Services; and Business. Other popular industry areas include Music Industry, Community Services and Engineering Studies.

    Professional Learning

    The Pathways and Transition Team at Catholic Education Melbourne offers teachers/trainers a variety of professional learning forums and seminars to support VETiS, VCAL and career staff in schools. Visit the CEVN website to view professional learning offerings under the My PL (IPLS) section.

    The Catholic Education Commission of Victoria Ltd (CECV) offers teachers/trainers involved and committed to VETiS, VCAL and Careers provision, the opportunity to apply for sponsored study in the Master ‘s program Education Policy (International) conducted by the University of Melbourne.

    For further information, contact the Pathways and Transition Team (Secondary Services Unit) on 03 9267 0228.