Role of schools
School-based apprenticeships and traineeships (SATs) provide young people with more flexibility and variety in their senior schooling. This can have enormous benefits for those who thrive on a hands-on learning approach.
Schools that support student opportunities with SATs are providing their students with an effective platform for making that transition to work by:
- considering if the SAT forms an appropriate component of an overall school program, and if so, giving approval to the school-based arrangement
- assisting students to get started in a SAT
- ensuring that minimum paid work requirements, off-the-job training limits and all other eligibility requirements are met
- working with the student, parent or guardian (if applicable and appropriate), employer and training organisation to negotiate a schedule of school studies, work and training to ensure the impact on the school timetable
- helping eligible students with travel and accommodation support funding
- ongoing monitoring and support to help students meet their school and training commitment.
Education Queensland has developed a specific procedure for state schools' involved in school-based apprenticeships and traineeships.
The Guide to school-based apprenticeships and traineeships (PDF, 267KB) also provides further details on SATs that may be helpful to schools.
Supporting your students
At all stages of a SAT, your students will require support to successfully move through their SAT. Some suggestions of support strategies include:
- Flexible timetabling - building spares, having duplicate classes over the school week and allowing students to reduce the number of subjects they study can all help towards effectively combining the SAT with school studies.
- Talk to the student and their parents about their goals and aspirations before they commence a SAT. Make sure they understand the additional responsibilities.
- Use the school's intranet to post teaching notes and reference material for students who may miss classes.
- Regularly monitor the progress students are making in their SATs - talk to them, their employer and training organisation.
- Set up a learning centre where students on spares can have access to computers and a teacher or tutor to assist them.
- Organise buddy systems where experienced students already undertaking a SAT can mentor newly signed-up school-based apprentices and trainees as they work to balance school, work and training.
- Work collaboratively with the training organisation to assess students' capacity to cope with the LLN demands of a SAT. LLN skills are the responsibility of both the school and training organisation.
SATs in your school
Establishing a successful SATs program within your school requires a few key elements:
- Have a consistent SATs contact person or coordinator at the school to make it easy for employers and partners to make contact with your school's SATs program.
- Create partnerships with employers in your local area.
- Ensure SATs is discussed as part of students' Senior Education and Training (SET) plans.
- Start a database of students interested in SATs, so they can be easily identified when vacancies arise.
- Marketing and communication of the SATs program to students, parents and local organisations.
Getting students interested
- Discuss a broad range of careers with your students so they are informed about what is available in your local area.
- Consider establishing a 'School-based Apprentice or Trainee of the Year' award.
- Encourage current and past school-based apprentices and trainees to talk to younger students about their experience.
- Invite apprentices and trainees within your local area into your school to talk to students about their decision to enter an apprenticeship or traineeship.
- Arrange interested students to participate in Try'A Trade- a program that gives students 'a go' at different trades, delivered by WorldSkills and Construction Skills Queensland.
To assist with your SATs program, consider building informal partnerships with the following within your local community:
- Australian Apprenticeships Centres (AACs) and other government funded organisations who can provide support and links to business and industry
- local training organisations, who may help plan courses and timetables that suit schools, employers and students
- group training organisations who may be able to provide access to a wide range of host employers
- local employers - encourage them to visit the school to talk about their industry or business or work with them to organise work placements for students interested in a SAT in their industry
- other schools.