School operations

Community VCAL

Establishing a partnership with an NSSP

An agreement with a Non-school Senior Secondary Provider (NSSP) for the delivery of Community Victorian Certificate of Applied Learning (Community VCAL) can only be entered into by the school council (not the principal). This is because school councils are legal entities and are established as a body corporate under section 2.3.2(4) of the Education and Training Reform Act 2006 (Vic)External Link .

The arrangement for third party providers, such as an NSSP, to provide educational services to a school is a decision for each school council in consideration of resource requirements, individual needs of students and the delivery of the school’s curriculum in line with Departmental policies.

The principal and other key staff play an important advisory role to the school council in deciding whether to enter the contract with an NSSP. The template Community VCAL contract must be used by any school wishing to establish a partnership with a NSSP for the delivery of Community VCAL.

The principal of the home school, as the Executive Officer of the school council is able to sign the contract itself (if the decision has been made by the school council to enter into the agreement) but the contract can also be signed by the school council (authorised representative or common seal). School councils are encouraged to minute their decision relating to the contract with the NSSP made at the school council meeting. Refer to School Council — Meetings for further information on good practice in school council meetings. In these Guidelines, the term ‘school staff’ is used to indicate a principal’s nominee such as a coordinator, who undertakes most tasks in relation to the contract with the NSSP.

Suitability of NSSP

Before entering a contractual arrangement with an NSSP the school will need to establish that the NSSP holds current registration with the Victorian Registrations and Qualifications Authority (VRQA) and authorisation by the Victorian Curriculum Assessment Authority (VCAA) to deliver VCAL. An NSSP that is a registered training organisation (RTO) must have registration with the VRQA or Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA). The RTO must have the vocational education and training (VET) program it is offering on its scope of registration.

The NSSP must provide evidence that its staff have the appropriate qualifications as required by the relevant authorities and in compliance with the VRQA Guidelines for Non-school Senior Secondary Education Providers 2017External Link .

School staff refer to the State RegisterExternal Link on the VRQA website to ensure that the NSSP is delivering programs to students that are within the scope of its registration:

Regional endorsement

Schools must seek endorsement from the relevant Regional Director to enter into discussions with a NSSP to deliver Community VCAL. The Regional Director must approve the final unsigned Standard Community VCAL Contract prior to its execution.

The Manager Youth Pathways and Transitions (MYPAT) in each region will be the first point of contact for principals when seeking Regional Director endorsement and any issues or concerns in relation to their contractual agreement with a NSSP.

Written agreements

Once the Regional Director endorsement has been provided to enter into a partnership for the provision of Community VCAL, the school council can prepare a contract with the NSSP for all students enrolled at the school who will be undertaking the Community VCAL program provided by the NSSP.

The school council must use the Re-engagement Program (Standard Community VCAL Contract) that has been developed by the Department. This contract clearly delineates the roles and responsibilities of the NSSP and the home school and it is important to use only this contract to ensure that the NSSP is fully aware of its obligations under the contract to follow Department policies and to report to the home school as required.

Once executed, the principal or school council provides a signed copy to the NSSP and keeps a copy for their records.

If the home school has any concerns that the NSSP is not meeting its obligations under the contract, the home school must contact the MYPAT for advice.

Schools must renew contracts with the NSSP annually. Refer to the process flow below.

Process flow for establishing partnerships with NSSP to provide Community VCAL

Process flow for establishing partnerships with NSSP to provide Community VCAL
Process flow for establishing partnerships with NSSP to provide Community VCAL


The process flow comprises the following steps:

  • In early Term 4 of the year prior to the contract commencing, the Principal/delegate has a discussion with the MYPAT around the opportunity to enter into contract with a NSSP to provide CVCAL to identified students.
  • MYPAT discusses arrangements with Regional Director to seek endorsement for school and NSSP to enter into partnership.
    • Regional Director endorses.
  • Principal/delegate fills out the home school responsibility section in Appendix A – Non-VET matrix and/or Appendix B – VET matrix — and sends unsigned re-engagement program contract (Standard Community VCAL) to NSSP for review and input.
  • NSSP fills out the contractor responsibility section in Appendix A – Non-VET matrix and/or Appendix B – VET matrix — returns unsigned copy to Principal/delegate.
  • Principal/delegate send final unsigned contract to the MYPAT to review and for MYPAT to seek Regional Director endorsement. Principal also completes Cover Sheet – Secondary School Offering CVCAL in Partnership with Non-School Senior Secondary Provider and sends to MYPAT along with unsigned contract.
    • Regional Director endorses.
  • Once it is known which students will be enrolled, school and NSSP fill out Schedule 1 – Part A – Non-VET Services and/or Schedule 1 – Part B – VET Services AND Schedule 2.
  • Principal/delegate finalise list of referred students in the contract. School Council/Principal and NSSP sign contract — send copy to MYPAT for their records.


The flowchart is presented in vertical alignment with arrows pointing from one step down to the next.

Download Process flow for establishing partnerships with NSSP to provide Community VCAL
Guidance chapter on establishing partnerships with NSSPs

Reviewed 01 December 2020

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