School operations

School-Based Apprenticeships and Traineeships

Student eligibility and readiness

School-based apprenticeship and traineeships (SBATs) require students to simultaneously undertake:

  • the VCE, including the VCE Vocational Major, or the VPC
  • accredited vocational training at the certificate II, III or IV level
  • paid employment.

Accordingly, schools work with students to decide if an SBAT is the right pathway for them and whether they are ready to commit to each of the 3 SBAT elements.

Undertaking the VCE, including the VCE Vocational Major, or the VPC, is a vital element of the SBAT pathway, with major employers consistently reporting that they are seeking young people with high levels of literacy and numeracy. Schools and students should consider enrolling in subjects that complement the student’s vocational training.

Student eligibility

SBATs are open to students who are:

  • at least 15 years of age
  • enrolled in the VCE, including the VCE Vocational Major, or the VPC
  • Australian Citizens or Permanent Residents.

Eligibility for non-citizens in certain circumstances

Non-citizens holding a Bridging Visa E, Temporary Protection Visa or Safe Haven Enterprise Visa may be eligible to undertake a Victorian Training Guarantee subsidised SBAT.

To enrol with a private RTO the eligible student must have a valid referral form issued and endorsed by the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre or Australian Red Cross.

To enrol with a TAFE institute or a Learn Local RTO, the eligible student must:

  • have a valid referral form issued and endorsed by the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre or Australian Red Cross
  • hold an appropriate visa verified by the TAFE institute or Learn Local RTO using the VEVO system.

Student career exploration and planning

Matching student needs, interests and preferences with appropriate qualifications and industries is essential to achieving beneficial and successful SBAT outcomes for students and employers.

Schools provide career exploration and planning from Years 7 to 10 to allow students to identify their preferred post-school direction and make more informed choices about possible SBAT pathways. This may include:

  • participation in activities, such as industry or TAFE ‘tasters’ in Years 8 or 9
  • engaging in existing VET qualifications alongside structured workplace learning in Year 10.

Students with disabilities

Schools must support students with disabilities to engage in SBATs, which includes making reasonable adjustments in the workplace.

Information about supporting students with disability or additional needs is available at: Career education and workplace learning for students with disabilityExternal Link .


Parents and carers have a major influence on their child’s education and career decisions. Opportunities to nurture partnerships between families, schools and relevant organisations must be explored and maximised. The Child Safe StandardsExternal Link also require families to participate in decisions related to child safety and wellbeing.

Engaging Parents in Career ConversationsExternal Link is an online resource that careers practitioners and other school staff involved in establishing SBATs can use to engage parents in students’ career development.

Includes information on student eligibility, eligibility for non-citizens, student career exploration and planning and students with disabilities

Reviewed 21 February 2024

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