School operations

School-Based Apprenticeships and Traineeships

Overview of roles and responsibilities


Schools play a key role in supporting students to find a quality school-based apprenticeship and traineeship (SBAT) pathway and complete school, training and paid employment. Key roles and responsibilities are to:

  • maintain duty of care at all times, noting that locations where SBATs are delivered are considered part of the school environment under Ministerial Order 1359 in respect of Implementing the Child Safe Standards – Managing the risk of child abuse in schools and school boarding premises
  • support the student to develop their career action plan
  • contribute to determine the student’s readiness to undertake an SBAT
  • work with the student, parent/guardian, employer and registered training organisation (RTO) to develop an SBAT pathway plan
  • endorse agreed training plans, which meet the requirements for SBATs, prior to student enrolment in training with the RTO
  • determine how the proposed training and employment arrangements may affect the student’s eligibility to attain the VCE, including the VCE Vocational Major, or the VPC
  • monitor student school learning to keep pace with SBAT training and employment, and support the student where they may be facing learning challenges
  • provide an appropriate school staff member to regularly communicate with the student for pastoral or duty of care requirements
  • support identification of a suitable school timetable to enable all elements of the SBAT to be undertaken successfully
  • inform the employer and RTO of any issues that the student may need addressed to help minimise health and safety risks (in accordance with privacy requirements) during employment or training
  • ensure the student is aware of their rights and responsibilities at work in respect of equal opportunity, unlawful discrimination, harassment, bullying and workplace safety
  • provide information and support for the student to seek appropriate help or guidance in respect of any issues impacting them in paid employment, structured training or school
  • discuss with the student any reported absences from school, training or paid employment.


A student can get the best results from their SBAT if they:

  • work with the school’s careers practitioner to develop a career action plan
  • determine if an SBAT is a suitable option that aligns with their career action plan
  • actively participate in the development of the SBAT arrangements including school timetable, training and paid employment
  • commit to undertaking each element of the SBAT as outlined in the pathway plan
  • confirm details of any previously completed VET training with the school
  • notify the school, employer or RTO of any absences as soon as possible
  • notify the school as soon as possible of any issues or concerns which may impact the SBAT
  • seek assistance from the school or Head Start Coordinator for any issues arising from or affecting their SBAT.

Parents and guardians

Parents and guardians can improve their young person’s chances of success if they:

  • support them to get information and make an informed decision to undertake an SBAT
  • provide permission for them to undertake the SBAT as outlined in the SBAT pathway plan and the training plan, including during any holiday periods
  • report any absences to the employer, RTO or school as soon as possible
  • maintain constructive communication with the school, RTO and employer to support them during the SBAT program.


Employers play a key role in the development of the skills and experience of apprentices and trainees. Employer roles and responsibilities are to:

  • work with the school, student, parent/carer and RTO to develop an SBAT pathway plan before entering into a training contract
  • offer paid employment to the student under an industrial agreement that recognises SBATs
  • obtain VRQA approval to enter into a training contract
  • provide supervision by a ‘fit and proper’ person with the skills and qualifications to support the student to attain the skills outlined in the training plan
  • support the student to undertake nominated training and school study
  • ensure that any reasonable adjustments as identified in the pathway plan are in place
  • ensure the student understands workplace policies regarding bullying, harassment, discrimination and any other behavioural standards or codes of conduct that apply to the workplace
  • ensure other employees understand acceptable and unacceptable behaviours in dealing with the student, and provide a safe working environment free from bullying, harassment and discrimination
  • ensure the student can readily contact their school and Apprenticeship Support Officer (ASO) if required during the placement
  • ensure school staff can readily contact the student during the SBAT placement
  • record student paid employment hours and advise the school of student absences.

Apprenticeship Network Provider

Apprenticeship Network Provider (ANP) responsibilities are to:

  • administer the signing and registration of the student’s SBAT training contract
  • provide assistance to employers, apprentices, trainees and training providers throughout the duration of the apprenticeship or traineeship
  • administer incentive payments to employers and apprentices
  • work with state training authorities to provide an integrated service
  • establish effective relationships with group training organisations (GTOs), RTOs, schools and community organisations.

Registered training organisations

Registered training organisations (RTO) (including TAFEs and other training providers) are responsible for the delivery of accredited training to the apprentice or trainee and to assess whether the apprentice or trainee has met the requirements of the qualification.

The RTO is selected by the employer and starts working with the student after the ANP registers the training contract with the VRQA. RTO responsibilities are to:

  • deliver a training program to the student that meets the requirements of the approved training scheme
  • implement appropriate processes to ensure student safety
  • ensure the training plan is endorsed by the school program
  • assess the student and keep the school regularly informed of student progress
  • for Learn LocalExternal Link RTOs or TAFE institutes enrolling non-citizens, confirm eligibility by verifying individual’s visa using the VEVO system. The Asylum Seeker Resource Centre can provide guidance if required. Refer to the Student eligibility and readiness guidance chapter for more information
  • for private RTOs enrolling certain non-citizens, confirm eligibility by verifying individual’s visa using the VEVO system. The Asylum Seeker Resource Centre can provide guidance if required. Private RTOs may also enrol certain non-citizens if they have been previously referred to them via a valid referral form issued by the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre
  • ensure any course fees and costs are clearly communicated to employer, student and parent.

RTOs also have specific child safety responsibilities which are to:

  • comply with the Child Safe StandardsExternal Link and have child safety policies and a code of conduct
  • provide the student with information and support about the training requirements being undertaken
  • ensure all trainers providing training services to the SBAT student have a Working with Children clearance, as required by the Worker Screening Act 2020, unless the RTO is satisfied that such persons are exempt under the Act from a check
  • report any student absences to the employer and the school.

The department

The department is responsible for leading policy, key program-enabling activities and governance and evaluation responsibilities. Specifically, this includes:

  • support school SBAT staff and regional office staff
  • manage the Head Start program (program design, policy operational funding and hub staffing)
  • ensure the integration of SBATs with other careers and transitions initiatives
  • monitor the performance of SBATs and evaluating the impact of the initiative over time
  • work with partner agencies.

Department area and regional teams

Department area and regional teams’ responsibilities are to:

  • support schools to understand the reach of their responsibility for SBAT students in the school, at the training provider and in the workplace
  • support implementation of minimum standards, compliance and other requirements for SBATs
  • identify areas of industry demand and point schools and students towards these, including engagement with industry, employers, TAFEs, LLENs and other SBAT stakeholders.

Apprenticeships Victoria Apprenticeship Support Officer

Apprenticeships Victoria Apprenticeship Support Officer (ASO) responsibilities are to:

  • support and guide all apprentices aged 15 to 24 in the first year of their apprenticeship
  • offer advice and assistance on personal and workplace issues
  • work with RTOs, ANPs and other service providers to deliver an integrated apprenticeship support service.

Local Learning and Employment Networks

Local Learning and Employment Networks (LLENs) responsibilities are to work together with Head Start hubs to support work-based learning for government school students.

Victorian Curriculum and Assessment Authority

The Victorian Curriculum and Assessment Authority (VCAA) provides guidance regarding the integration of the SBAT pathway with the senior secondary and foundation secondary certificate options. In respect of individual SBAT arrangements, the VCAA’s responsibilities are to:

  • calculate credit towards the VCE, including the VCE Vocational Major, or the VPC
  • issue the VCE, including the VCE Vocational Major, or the VPC at completion.

Victorian Registration and Qualifications Authority

The Victorian Registration and Qualifications Authority (VRQA) regulates apprenticeships and traineeships in Victoria. Under the Education and Training Reform Act 2006, the VRQA authorised officers may enter a workplace at any time to make inquiries and inspect, examine and copy documents relating to an employer’s obligations under the training contract and the Education and Training Reform Act 2006. The VRQA’s responsibilities are to:

  • organise regulatory intervention where required
  • approve employers
  • approve training contracts
  • provide ongoing training contract administration
  • issue apprenticeship registration completion letters and trade papers.
Includes information outlining the roles and responsibilities of all parties to an SBAT

Reviewed 21 February 2024

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