Establishing a partnership with an NSSSFSP
A contractual agreement with a non-school senior secondary and foundation secondary provider (NSSSFSP) for the delivery of the VCE Vocational Major and Victorian Pathways Certificate (VPC) 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 .
The arrangement for NSSSFSPs to provide educational services to a school is a decision for each school council in consideration of the best interests and individual needs of the student, resource requirements, and the delivery of the school’s curriculum in line with department 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 NSSSFSP. The template VCE Vocational Major and VPC Contract must be used by any government school wishing to establish a partnership with a NSSSFSP for the delivery of the VCE Vocational Major and VPC.
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 contractual 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 NSSSFSP made at the school council meeting. Refer to 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 NSSSFSP.
Suitability of NSSSFSP
Before entering a contractual arrangement with an NSSSFSP the school will need to establish that the NSSSFSP holds current registration with the Victorian Registration and Qualifications Authority (VRQA) and authorisation by the Victorian Curriculum Assessment Authority (VCAA) to deliver the VCE Vocational Major and VPC. An NSSSFSP that is also a registered training organisation (RTO) must have registration with the VRQA or ASQA to deliver the vocational education and training (VET) program it is offering.
The school must ensure that the NSSSFSP provides evidence that its staff have the appropriate qualifications required under the Guidelines for Non-school providers: Minimum standards to provide an accredited senior secondary or foundation secondary course.
School staff must:
- refer to the to ensure that the NSSSFSP is delivering programs to students that are within the scope of its registration
- check on if the VET program being offered by the RTO is on its scope of registration.
Regional endorsement to enter discussions for partnership
Schools must seek endorsement from the relevant regional director to enter into discussions with a NSSSFSP to deliver the VCE Vocational Major and VPC.
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 NSSSFSP.
Preparing and signing the contract
Once the regional director endorsement has been provided to enter into a partnership for the provision of the VCE Vocational Major and VPC, the school council can prepare a contract with the NSSSFSP for all students enrolled at the school who will be undertaking the VCE Vocational Major and VPC provided by the NSSSFSP.
The school council must use the standard VCE Vocational Major and VPC contract (available on the ) that has been developed by the department. This contract clearly delineates the roles and responsibilities of the NSSSFSP and the home school and it is important to use only this contract to ensure that the NSSSFSP is fully aware of its obligations under the contract to follow department policies and to report to the home school as required.
The regional director must approve the final unsigned VCE Vocational Major and VPC contract prior to its execution.
Once executed, the principal or school council provides a signed copy to the NSSSFSP, the regional office (MYPAT) and keeps a copy for their records.
If the home school has any concerns that the NSSSFSP is not meeting its obligations under the contract, the home school must contact the MYPAT for advice.
Schools must renew contracts with the NSSSFSP annually. Refer to the process flow below.
Process flow for establishing partnerships with NSSSFSPs to deliver the VCE Vocational Major and VPC
The process flow comprises the following steps:
- Prior to the contract commencing, the school confirms contract is in the best interest of the student and seeks pre-approval from the regional director to enter into a partnership with NSSSFSP.
- MYPAT discusses arrangement with regional director to seek endorsement for school and NSSSFSP to enter into a partnership.
- Regional director endorses partnership.
- School discusses students and responsibilities with NSSSFSP and fills in Schedule 1 Part A and B, the home school responsibility section in Appendix A – Non-Vet Matrix and Appendix B – VET Matrix. And sends unsigned to NSSSFSP for review.
- NSSSFSP fills out Contractor responsibility section in Appendix A – Non-Vet Matrix and Appendix B – VET Matrix and returns unsigned to school.
- Princiapl completes coversheet. School sends coversheet and unsigned contract to MYPAT to seek endorsement from the regional director.
- Regional director endorses via coversheet.
- Once regional director has endorsed the contract via the coversheet, both parties can sign the contract and school sends a copy of signed contract to MYPAT for their records.
- Any additional students must be added to the contract using Schedule 3 – Service Variation Notice.
The flowchart is presented in vertical alignment with arrows pointing from one step down to the next.
Reviewed 14 June 2023