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Senior Schooling News With Natalie Jounquay - School Based Apprenticeships and Traineeships

​Senior Schooling News
With Natalie Jounquay
School-Based Apprenticeships And Traineeships
I am often asked for information about school-based apprenticeships and traineeships. These are a great way for students to get started early in their career while still attending school. We have a number of students completing school-based apprenticeships and traineeships, including Certificates II or III in Retail Services with McDonald’s, a Certificate III in Commercial Cookery with Savour the Flavour, a Certificate III in Accounts Administration with QCS-NDT, a Certificate III in Early Education with Rainbow Valley Early Learning Centre and a Certificate III in Electrotechnology (Electrician) with ADE Electrical. 
It is not the school’s role to find school-based apprenticeships or traineeships for students; however we need to approve the commencement of a school-based apprenticeship or traineeship. 
Information Adapted from Apprenticeships Info (
School-based apprenticeships and traineeships (SATs) allow high school students, generally in Years 10, 11 and 12, to work for an employer and train towards a recognised qualification, while completing their secondary schooling and studying for their Queensland Certificate of Education and/or Overall Position (OP) score. 
There are two main differences between a school-based apprentice and a school-based trainee. A school-based apprentice is trained in a skilled trade and upon successful completion will become a qualified tradesperson. Trades include electrical, plumbing, cabinet making and automotive just to name a few. 
School-based trainees are trained in a vocational area, such as office administration, information technology and hospitality, and upon completion will receive a minimum of a Certificate II in the chosen vocational area. 
Steps to getting started: 
Periods of employment must never fall below the minimum number of hours per 12 months
  • School-based apprentices and trainees require a minimum of 375 hours (50 days) of paid employment.
  • Electrotechnology school-based apprentices and trainees require a minimum of 600 hours (80 days) of paid employment.
  • It is expected that the employer will provide a minimum of 7.5 hours per week averaged over a three month period. 

Your school must give approval for the SAT

  • Negotiations need to be carried out between yourself, your parent or guardian and your school to ensure that the SAT forms an appropriate component of an overall school program.
  • The signing of the training contract must not be done without the consent of the school.


The SAT must have an impact on the student's timetable
  • The impact of the school timetable means that some of the training and/or work must take place during school hours.
  • The school, student, employer, parent/guardian and training organisation will negotiate a schedule showing when the work and training aspects will occur to show the impact of the SAT on the student's school timetable. 
Off-the-job training limits that apply to school-based apprentices (not trainees)
Dependent upon the (full-time) nominal term of the apprenticeship, there is a limit to the off-the-job training that may be provided to a school-based apprentice while at school: 
  • four year nominal term - a maximum of 33.3% of the competencies
  • three year nominal term - a maximum of 40% of the competencies
  • two year nominal term - a maximum of 50% of the competencies.
Natalie Jounquay
Head of Senior Schooling