School operations

Purchasing Secondary Courses and Vocational Training from External Providers


This policy outlines the requirements for purchasing secondary courses and vocational training from external providers.


  • Schools have primary responsibility for the delivery of senior secondary curriculum to their enrolled students.
  • To offer Vocational Education and Training (VET) programs, schools must enter into contractual arrangements with Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) if the school is not a registered RTO themselves, or if the school is a registered RTO but is not registered to provide the particular program it is seeking to offer.
  • All government schools entering into arrangements with RTOs must have a valid, signed contract or agreement with the RTO for the delivery of VET programs.
  • Refer to the Guidance tab for further information on how to purchase VET from external providers, including template contracts and agreements. These templates are also available on the Resources tab.


To offer VET programs, schools often enter into arrangements with external providers to deliver part, or all, of the Victorian Certificate of Education (VCE), including the VCE Vocational Major or the Victorian Pathways Certificate (VPC). External providers may include:

  • TAFE providers
  • Private providers (RTOs)
  • Registered schools, including both government and non-government that are also RTOs, and
  • Learn Local providers that are also RTOs.

Non-government schools

Non-government schools that plan to purchase part of their senior secondary curriculum from external providers may obtain advice from the Catholic Education Commission of Victoria or Independent Schools Victoria.

Re-engagement programs

If it is a re-engagement program, for example a VCE, including the VCE Vocational Major and VPC contract then government schools may purchase all of the secondary curriculum from an external provider. Endorsement by the DE regional officer is required for this.

Where the program is run by another provider there must be a written agreement between the school and the provider detailing the responsibilities of each party and the fee arrangements that are in place.

For further information refer to the Re-Engagement Programs Policy.


For assistance with queries relating to purchasing VET programs, contact your relevant school sector.

Government schools

Senior Secondary Pathways Reform Taskforce, Department of Education

Email or phone 03 7022 1580

Catholic schools

Catholic Education Commission of Victoria

Contact: Peter Devery Team Leader, Pathways and Transitions, Catholic Education Melbourne.

Email or phone 03 9267 0237

Independent schools

Independent Schools Victoria

Contact: Pam Hargreaves Education Consultant, Pathways

Email or phone 03 9825 7246

Department policy outlining the requirements for purchasing secondary courses and VET courses from external providers. Resources include template contracts

Reviewed 10 April 2024

Policy last updated

10 April 2024


  • Schools
  • School councils


See Contact details at the bottom of the policy page

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