School-Based Apprenticeships and Traineeships


What Are School-Based Apprenticeships & Traineeships

A School-based Apprenticeship is a way for senior secondary school students to combine paid work with school whilst starting their career.

Students commence a contract of training through a part-time apprenticeship/traineeship, learning competencies on the job and through a Registered Training Organisation (RTO). The competencies earn credits towards their South Australian Certificate of Education (SACE). This means that a student undertaking a SBAT starts to complete the term of their contract of training for a trade based apprenticeship (usually around four years full-time) or traineeship (usually one year full-time), while they are still at school. Arrangements of the student’s work pattern are negotiated between the school and employer.


How long does a School-Based Apprenticeship or Traineeship take to complete?

If the SBAT is not completed prior to the completion of year 12, students will convert to either a part-time or full-time apprenticeship with the employer until it is completed. Apprenticeships are competency based training which means that when all the trade school competencies are successfully completed and the employer believes the apprentice is competent in all areas, the apprentice or trainee’s contract may be negotiated for an early ‘sign off’.

Engineering Fabrication Apprentice

Does a School-Based Apprentice or Trainee get paid?

Yes, the relevant industry award covers most Australian School-based Apprenticeships. The student is always paid for the time spent in the workplace.


Is the School-Based Apprenticeship or Traineeship part of a student's SACE education?

Yes! The training competencies of the qualification and the time at work are included in the school’s programming of the student’s learning plan. School-based Apprenticeships & Traineeships can be completed in a number of ways. It could be by working one or more days a week, on weekends and during school holidays. It may include weeks of block release of time to work with the employer. A programmed format is required to be arranged. A minimal of seven and a half hours a week ‘on the job’ employment is required.

Child Care Trainee

What are the benefits of undertaking a School-Based Apprenticeship or Traineeship?

  • Getting a head start in your chosen job without competing with the rest of the Year 12 school leavers in the State
  • Earning SACE credits as you achieve competencies in your SBAT (up to 150 credits)
  • Starting to complete time off of your contract of training term
  • Starting your career and earning money while you are still at school
  • Working to achieve a nationally-recognised qualification

SACE Requirements

SACE Requirements

Steps to Work Through

  • Speak with family, friends and your VET Leader at school about employment opportunities and the process of obtaining a School-Based Apprenticeship or Traineeship
  • Develop a resume that relates to the field of work in your area of interest
  • Undertake Work Experience in the area(s) of interest
  • Pursue a related Vocational Education & Training course
  • A Drivers Licence is likely to be required – place a date on your home calendar for 'L's or 'P's
  • Seek a casual job – to demonstrate and learn a 'work ethic'


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