School operations

Student Resource Package – Targeted Initiatives

Vocational Education and Training Delivered to School Students (Reference 143)

Program description

Vocational Education and Training (VET) Delivered to School Students (VDSS) is a key component of the Victorian Government's strategy to support high-quality vocational pathways, increase student retention, and improve Year 12 or equivalent completion rates by providing options for all students.

VET studies can contribute towards the completion of the Victorian Certificate of Education (VCE).

The core learning allocation in the Student Resource Package (SRP) provided to schools for each student is the primary source of funding for VET programs. Government schools are also provided with targeted VET funding to support the higher cost of provision in this area.

Components of VET funding

There are 4 components of VET funding:

  • the Core student learning component (mainstream schools) or Stages of Learning funding (specialist schools) of the SRP
  • targeted VET funding
  • VET materials funding
  • small-scale adjustment.

SRP Core Student Learning or Core Stages of Learning components

The Core Student Learning component or Stages of Learning funding of the SRP is provided to schools to offset the costs of VDSS.

In 2024, the Core SRP component that a mainstream school will receive to support the delivery of VET is $1,271, per full time equivalent (FTE) certificate enrolment.

For specialist schools, with students participating in eligible VET certificates, the Stages of Learning component that a school will receive to contribute to support the delivery of VET is $1,058, per FTE certificate enrolment.

A Full Time Equivalent (FTE) enrolment in an eligible VET course is defined as 180 hours of training per year. This will attract the full per certificate amount. Enrolments of less than 180 hours of training in a year will attract pro-rata funding.*

*CUA30915 Certificate III in Music Industry, for which a FTE enrolment is 170 hours.

Targeted VET funding

Targeted VET funding is based on a 6-band model and is allocated pro-rata for enrolments up to 180 hours per VET certificate per year.

To attract targeted VET funding, schools must enter accurate details of all VET enrolments on the Victorian Assessment Software System (VASS) by the annual VET enrolment deadline, which is 30 April in 2024.

Enrolments for students between 15 to 20 years of age (inclusive) at the annual VET enrolment deadline enrolled in eligible VET certificates will attract targeted VET funding.

Certificate II and Certificate III level qualifications (excluding school-based apprenticeships and traineeships and Head Start apprenticeships and traineeships) undertaken as part of the VCE are eligible for targeted VET funding. Some certificates are subject to restrictions, and schools should always check with the Victorian Curriculum and Assessment Authority (VCAA) VET Unit if they are unsure whether a certificate is appropriate for senior secondary students.
Certificate IV and above qualifications may be funded, provided the school has first gained approval from VCAA to offer the higher-level qualification to VCE students.

Further information and an indicative list of VET qualifications eligible for targeted VET funding is available at: VET Delivered to School Students: Resources.

Targeted VET funding is NOT available for enrolments in:

  • Certificate I qualifications
  • certificates in General Education for Adults and generalist programs such as Certificate II in EAL (Employment); Certificate II in EAL (Access) and Certificate III in School Based Education Support
  • most Certificate IV and above qualifications, including Diploma-level. Schools wishing to provide Diplomas may fund this delivery from the core SRP allocation. There are some exceptions to this, notably the Diploma of Aviation (Commercial Pilot Licence – Aeroplane) where it is offered by a pre-approved list of providers. Further information is available on the Vocational Education and Training Delivered to School Students PAL page
  • school-based apprenticeships and traineeships, or Head Start apprenticeships and traineeships.

A student who is enrolled in a school, either full-time or part-time, and also enrolled independently of their school in a VET program at a TAFE or Registered Training Organisation (RTO), is not eligible to have their VET studies subsidised through targeted VET funding.

VET materials funding

In 2024, a 2-band VET materials funding model will be in place (high-cost materials funding band and low-cost materials funding band). The level of funding received will be based on VET enrolments, and payments will be received as quarterly cash grants through the Student Resource Package (SRP).

Each VET enrolment will be allocated $250 for certificates that sit within the low-cost materials funding band and $450 for those that sit within the high-cost materials funding band. This funding is not subject to pro rata and will be allocated in full for each enrolment regardless of the number of hours in which a student is enrolled.

For further information on VET materials funding, visit Vocational Education and Training (VET) Delivered to School Students.

Small-scale adjustment

In 2024, eligible schools will receive a small-scale adjustment based on their total Years 7 to 12 enrolments. The funding is provided for schools that do not have the scale of student enrolments to offset VDSS costs.

Schools with 200 or fewer students will receive additional funding, for up to 15 VDSS FTE enrolments, at either the equivalent SRP Core component value (mainstream schools) or Core Stages of Learning component value (specialist schools).

Schools with enrolments between 201 and 400 students receive a pro-rata allocation. Schools with enrolments greater than 400 will not be eligible for this funding.

Online budget planner

The SRP Planner has been enhanced to enable schools the capacity to model VDSS enrolment scenarios to assess funding outcomes.

The tool will allow administrators to input certificate types and enrolments and receive a breakdown of estimated funding for 2024.

The tool aims to improve schools’ understanding of the funding streams available for VDSS and to support better financial planning.

Funding formula

The funding allocation to support the provision of VET comprises:

Eligible FTE certificate enrolments × Funding level (Core SRP component + Targeted VET funding) (for students aged from 15 years to 20 years of age (inclusive) at annual VET enrolment deadline


Small-scale adjustment (Eligible VDSS FTE enrolments (up to 15 FTE) × Small-scale adjustment rate (where total Year 7-12 enrolments ≤ 400).

VET materials funding rates for 2024
BandMaterials funding rate
Low-cost materials$250.00
High-cost materials$450.00

Small-scale adjustment rates

Mainstream schools: Maximum rate is $1,271 per enrolment capped at 15 enrolments for eligible schools with up to 200 students. For schools with enrolments between 201 and 400 students, the rate reduces by $6.32 per student.

Special schools: Maximum rate is $1,058 per enrolment capped at 15 enrolments for eligible schools with up to 200 students. For schools with enrolments between 201 and 400 students, the rate reduces by $5.26 per student.

The amount of funding received in Terms 1 and 2 will be based on enrolment figures from 2023. This funding amount will be adjusted accordingly pending the correctly entered enrolments at the annual VET enrolment deadline (30 April 2024).

It is important for schools to correctly enter enrolments on VASS by the due date, including the certificate title, units of competency, and hours, as there is no capacity to provide funding to schools that have not entered VET enrolments on VASS at all or have entered them with incorrect information.

School-based apprenticeships and traineeships

A student enrolled in a VET qualification through a school-based apprenticeship or traineeship (SBAT) is funded under Skills First and is not eligible for VDSS funding. For assessment purposes, students undertaking VET as part of an SBAT are still able to gain credit towards completion of their senior secondary certificate. Further information on SBATs is available at: School-Based Apprenticeships and TraineeshipsExternal Link .

Head Start

In 2023, the Head Start program was rolled out to all Victorian government secondary schools. Head Start provides an innovative approach that encourages students to undertake an apprenticeship or traineeship with high-quality Certificate III qualifications in priority industries as part of their senior secondary studies. Like all SBATs, Head Start apprenticeships and traineeshipsExternal Link are funded through Skills First.

School VET fees and charges

VET programs are considered standard curriculum and therefore government schools must provide VET tuition free of charge. Government schools cannot require payments from parents or families for essential learning materials for VET studies. Schools can invite students, parents or families to contribute voluntarily to the school’s overall VET program, but non-payment of this voluntary contribution cannot preclude a student’s involvement in the program.

Schools can invite parents or families to purchase items and activities associated with a VET course that enhance or broaden the schooling experience of students and are additional to or outside what the school provides for free to deliver the curriculum (for example, an optional course-related excursion or non-standard classroom materials). It is at a school’s discretion to determine whether an item or activity associated with a VET course is extra-curricular.

As all VET courses provided to students by the school are delivered as part of the Curriculum, the option for students to choose between VET courses does not qualify a course as extra-curricular.

Schools can also invite parents to bring from home or purchase VET tools and equipment directly from third parties instead of using what is made available for free by the school. When inviting parents to purchase VET tools and equipment directly from a third-party provider, the school may include a list of recommended tools and equipment. If a parent does not provide or purchase their own tools and equipment, the school must ensure that students have free access to tools and equipment as required for the school’s delivery of the Curriculum.

Schools are not required to provide students with items to own, or keep, on a one-to-one basis. However, schools must determine appropriate resourcing to ensure students have access to the relevant VET tools and equipment for the duration required to access the Curriculum.

Schools are not obliged to provide safety equipment that is considered part of a student’s uniform/clothing or is specifically fitted to them (for example, safety boots, closed shoes).

VET materials are items required for the provision of a VET program. These items are necessarily consumed or transformed by students as part of training or assessment requirements.

  • Where an item or part of an item is consumed or transformed through the undertaking of the VET program the item is deemed as a consumable and is covered by VET materials funding provided to schools. Examples include ingredients for a recipe, make up kits, and workbooks students need to complete as part of assessment.
  • Where an item is retained by a student, is usable beyond the life of the VET program, and is not consumed or transformed (in part or the whole) this item is considered to be non-consumable and should be purchased by the student or their family. Examples include boots, hammers, and hairbrushes. Some providers purchase these items for students and then invoice the students or their families while others will provide students with a list of items to be purchased by the student or their family directly.

Use of targeted VET funding

Targeted VET funding allocated to support VET provision can be used for a range of purposes.

This may include:

  • a contribution towards the purchase of delivery
  • a contribution towards teacher professional development and training
  • costs associated with registering as an RTO
  • program planning
  • purchase of curriculum materials, and
  • costs associated with the transition to new training packages.

Contractual arrangements between schools and VET providers

Schools entering into arrangements with RTOs are strongly encouraged to use the appropriate department template and must have a valid signed contract in place before training delivery begins.

The available standard contracts and agreements are: Standard VET purchasing contract, Standard VET Auspicing contract, School to school VET purchasing agreement, and School to school VET access agreement.

The templates have been designed for the specific use of government schools purchasing services from RTOs and are not recommended for use by other parties. Use of the templates by other parties is subject to the department’s copyright licensing arrangements (detailed at the base of the website’s landing page).

For more information on guidelines for the delivery of VET to secondary school students and the template Contracts and Agreements refer to: Purchasing Secondary Courses and Vocational Training from External Providers.

Timing of payments to schools

Government schools are provided with targeted funding for every eligible VET certificate enrolment provided they have entered the certificates, units and hours for each VET enrolment on VASS no later than annual VET enrolment deadline (30 April 2024). Payments are made in the quarterly cash grant through the Student Resource Package (SRP), as per the schedule details below.

Timing of payments to schools
TermsAllocationEnrolment basis
125% of Indicative funding2023 enrolments applying 2023 Revised Band Levels
225% of Indicative funding2023 enrolments applying 2023 Revised Band Levels
2/3Term 1 and 2 adjustments to school budgetsN/A
325% of Revised funding2024 Confirmed enrolments applying 2024 Confirmed Band Levels
425% of Revised funding2024 Confirmed enrolments applying 2024 Confirmed Band Levels

Professional development for newly appointed VASS users

In the early part of each year, the Victorian Curriculum and Assessment Authority (VCAA) conducts professional development training specifically designed for VASS administrators who are new to their position or who have never used VASS, and new schools offering a VCE or VET program for the first time.

Any queries related to VASS Operations should be directed to the VCAA’s VASS Support team:

Reference 143 of the SRP Guide, providing information on the Vocational Education and Training Delivered to School Students (VDSS)

Reviewed 27 March 2024


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