This policy outlines the ways schools may offer Vocational Education and Training (VET) to secondary school students.
- VET enables students to gain qualifications for all types of employment, and specific skills to help them in the workplace.
- Undertaking VET while at school allows students to mix general and vocational education and to make a start on training for a career before they leave school.
- VET studies allow secondary students to gain practical skills in a specific industry while contributing towards the completion of their senior secondary certificates, either the Victorian Certificate of Education (VCE) or the Victorian Certificate of Applied Learning (VCAL).
- Students can also study VET through school-based apprenticeships or traineeships (SBATs) or part-time apprenticeships and traineeships. In government schools, all SBATs will be supported by the Head Start program from 2023.
Schools which are Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) may run VET programs for students.
Alternatively, schools may engage external RTOs, including TAFE institutes, to deliver VET programs either directly or through third party arrangements. For department policy and information on engaging RTOs to deliver VET programs refer to: .
The primary source of funding for VET programs is through the core learning allocation in the Student Resource Package (SRP) provided to schools for each student.
Government schools are also provided with targeted VET funding to support the higher cost of provision in this area.
VET funding – changes for 2023
In 2023, a revised Vocational Education and Training Delivered to Secondary Students (VDSS) funding model for Victorian government schools will be introduced. The revised model will account for the additional costs of VDSS, the different modes of delivery across the state, and will also include funding for VET materials.
The revised VET funding model features:
- funding bands for VDSS that more closely reflect the market-based price (Adult VET Skills First price plus average fee subsidy) to support VET provision. Funding will be allocated pro-rata for enrolments up to 180 hours per VET certificate per year
- funding bands for VET materials costs allocated per VET certificate enrolment per year
- recognition of different core student resource package (SRP) funding rates for mainstream and specialist schools
- a small-scale adjustment to offset VDSS costs for schools with low total enrolment numbers.
Reference 143 of the 2023 indicative student resource package guide (available on the resources tab of ) outlines the revised VDSS funding model to be implemented in 2023, including how funding for VET programs is allocated to schools and how schools may use their targeted VET funding.
A student enrolled in a VET qualification through a school-based or Head Start apprenticeship or traineeship is funded under Skills First and is not eligible for targeted VET funding. However, students completing eligible certificates will receive VET materials funding for eligible certificates.
VET materials funding
In 2023, the department will implement a new VET materials funding model to address the cost barrier for families. This will replace the reimbursement process, in place during 2022, for the cost of essential learning materials for VET studies.
VET course materials are items and activities required for the provision of a VET program. Items are necessarily consumed or transformed by students as part of training or assessment, and activities must be undertaken for, and contribute to, training and assessment. These items must align with the inclusions and exclusions document.
The VET materials funding aims to allow government schools to support VET selection based on a student’s strengths and interests, without the barrier of financial constraints.
The new VET materials funding model consists of two funding bands, based on analysis of market costs. Certificates are placed into either a high-cost materials funding band or a low-cost materials funding band.
Each VDSS 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.
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.
In addition to the materials band funding amount, some schools may be eligible for further reimbursements for VET materials costs. This will be on a select basis for a limited number of schools whose VET materials costs in 2022 were considerably greater than the allocated materials band funding to be received in 2023. To be eligible for this additional funding, schools will be required to provide clear evidence of greater costs and expenditure than the 2023 allocated band funding amount for all eligible certificates. Further information on this additional funding, and the process for receiving the funding, will be available early in 2024.
Data on the cost of VET materials will continue to be collected during the implementation of the band funding model in 2023. This data will be used to revise the VET materials funding model for 2024 where required.
Eligibility for VET materials reimbursement funding
A VET program will be eligible for funding where:
- the program is provided to students undertaking certificates at level II to IV as part of their senior secondary certificate – materials fees for SBATs are claimable as long as the SBAT is part of the senior secondary certificate; and
- the costs incurred are for items that are necessarily consumed or transformed by students as part of training or assessment.
Not all VET programs are eligible for VET materials funding. Programs undertaken outside of the school curriculum and traineeships undertaken by students outside of school such as in a part-time employment arrangement, and Certificates in General Education or at Diploma level are all excluded.
Where parents choose to purchase additional or alternate items, from those provided or recommended by the school and/or provider, they may do so at their own expense. Items to be retained by the student will be required to be purchased independently by the student/parents.
For the remainder of 2022, the VET materials reimbursement process will continue.
Once applications are received:
- The Department will review the application form and create an Initiative Agreement with the school approved for funding. The Initiative Agreement will be set up in the (staff login required). Schools whose applications are approved will be notified via email (addressed to the Principal and CC the Business Manager and Lead Contact) of funding availability.
- The Department will create a Purchase Requisition in ARIBA to commit the funds in favour of the school.
- A school must create and submit a Reimbursement Request (RR) through the (staff login required). Information and guidance documents on how to create and submit the RR can be found in the homepage of the STFG Portal.
- Claims for reimbursement must include key documents such as school’s Debtor Invoice and invoice/s from the RTO that itemises the essential materials for the reimbursement to be approved.
- Once the RR is approved, the Department will process payment of the school’s Debtor invoice and payment remitted.
The Department may contact schools to obtain further information or seek clarity in relation to applications.
For Government schools
Vocational Education Unit, Senior Secondary Pathways Reform Taskforce
For Catholic schools
For Independent schools
Reviewed 17 October 2022