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Vocational education

VET stands for Vocational Education and Training. VET assists young people to get a job by providing training in specific job related practical skills and the underpinning knowledge for those skills. 

The Australian Qualifications Training Framework (AQTF) provides a set of standards and conditions that any organisation delivering nationally accredited training must comply with. As Isis District State High School complies with these requirements they are recognised as a Registered Training Organisation (RTO) and so can provide certified vocational qualifications that must be recognised by all other training organisations and employers across Australia.

Isis District State High School offers VET through a range of industry programs. This provides pathways for students at school to commence and complete Certificate I/II vocational qualifications. The successful completion of these qualifications results in increased skills levels for students and enhances the opportunities for them to competitively enter the workforce or to transition from school to further training. 

Vocational qualifications based on National Training Packages offered by Isis District State High School (RTO30313) include:

  • Certificate I in Engineering

  • Certificate I & II in Hospitality

  • Certificate I & II in Information, Digital Media and Technology

  • Certificate II in Rural Operations

  • Certificate II in Visual Arts

Successful completion of these VET courses will see the students awarded with a vocational certificate or a Statement of Attainment for partial completion of the qualification. Students successfully completing vocational training can gain credit toward the awarding of the Queensland Certificate of Education (QCE). 

VET programs help Year 11 and Year 12 students in their transition from school to work. They contribute to young people's chances of obtaining employment upon leaving school and opens up a range of post-school further education, training and employment possibilities.

As well as VET delivered through the school, students are also able to access other vocational education through a range of other programs.

School-TAFE Program

The school is involved in a partnership arrangement with Wide Bay Institute of TAFE (Bundaberg campus) for delivery of programs. Students involved are able to choose from a selected number of TAFE programs to complete one day a week while being enrolled at school. The programs are on a fee-paying basis to TAFE, though in the past generous concessions to the full fee have applied.

The school provides transport through a leased bus to Bundaberg and back at a heavily subsidised rate. Successful student achievement of the program results in a qualification (generally at Certificate II level, which is often regarded as the equivalent of the first year of a full-time apprenticeship). This would enhance the employment prospects of students in the future. Some relevant details of the programs are:-

  • Programs have restricted numbers of students able to be involved. 

  • The day of TAFE participation is from 9.30am to 2.30pm and transport would integrate with existing school buses.

  • The school provides transport from school to TAFE and return to school.

  • The school is prepared for students involved to complete five school subjects (instead of six).

Programs typically able to be offered by TAFE include hairdressing, make-up, tourism, automotive, childcare, construction and retail.

School-based Apprenticeships and Traineeships (SATs)

Year 11 and 12 students (and in some cases, Year 10) can undertake school-based apprenticeships and traineeships (SATs).  Students can complete/commence, an traineeship or apprenticeship as part of their senior school studies and at the same time engage in recognised training and paid work.

Student achievement in school-based apprenticeships and traineeships contribute credit  to the Queensland Certificate of Education (QCE) .

School-based apprenticeships and traineeships are essentially no different from mainstream apprenticeships and traineeships.  A training contract must be completed and registered with the State Government training department. The key difference is that these qualifications integrate school studies, training and paid work.

This means, for example, that a student may come to school for four days a week and complete one day in their workplace completing paid work and getting on-the-job training. They will also complete training with a Registered Training Organisation (RTO) eg. TAFE as a part of their traineeship.

In recognition that students have an additional workload due to a combination of study, paid work and training, students completing a SAT are able to complete one less subject than the normal program of study. When those lessons occur in the timetable they catch up on school work missed while they were attending work placement.

School-based Apprenticeship/Traineeship (SAT) is a form of paid work in an employee-employer relationship. As such, it requires an employer prepared to take on an employee by paying the wage and supervising the work/training. This may limit the number of SATs available, though there are state and federal government incentives available to employers.

The school generally hosts up to twenty SATs in Year 11 and 12 with district employers across a range of industry areas.

Work experience (application form, work experience insurance)

Student involvement in workplace learning, or work experience as it is more commonly known, forms a valuable part of the curriculum of this school. It helps to:

  • provide a link between the school environment and the work environment;

  • provide students with the opportunity to become more informed about work-related aspects;

  • assist students to develop general skills and attitudes relevant to the responsibilities of working life;

  • assist students to make informed career decisions by exploring potential work options;

  • give students insights into the diversity of employees in the workplace;

  • improve the student's maturity, confidence and self reliance;

  • provide a link between the school and the local community.

Work experience involves immersion in the workplace whereby a range of skills and attitudes may be developed through observing and work shadowing employees.

Any student over the age of 14 is able to be involved in work experience. Students would normally complete this work experience in their own time eg. after school, weekends, vacation periods. In addition, all Year 10 students complete one (1) week of work experience in school time (last week of Term 2).

Procedures for organising work experience include:-

  • students completing an Application Form indicating the vocational area they wish to work in;

  • school staff  attempting to organise an appropriate placement;

  • completing the normal documentation by way of contractual obligations;

  • the provision of workers’ compensation and public insurance indemnity; and

  • issuing an employer reference (if supplied) and a school Certificate of Completion (on request).