Managing your school-based apprentice or trainee

As an employer, your responsibilities to students completing a school-based apprenticeship or traineeship (SBAT) are the same as for non-SBAT apprentices and trainees. 

However, there are some additional things to consider:

  • the minimum hours of employment and training you must provide are different
  • you should consider what happens after the SBAT student leaves school
  • some qualifications are not available as an SBAT.

SBAT students include those participating in a Head Start pathway.

Minimum hours

The SBAT student must spend at least one day per normal school week on the job or in training.

You must also provide a minimum number of hours of training and employment. If you do not meet the minimum hours of training and employment for a week, increase the student’s hours in future weeks to make sure the average is above the minimum.

The amount and the method for calculating the average depends on if the SBAT student is receiving training outside the workplace or only workplace-based training.

Students receiving external training

SBAT students who receive some training outside the workplace must receive a minimum of 7 hours per week of paid employment and 6 hours per week of structured training.

This requirement is calculated as an average for 3 periods of 4 months in the year. These periods might overlap. For example:

  • March to June
  • May to August
  • July to October.

As a demonstration, between 1 January and 30 April 2022 there were 17 weeks. Taking that period to calculate if you met this requirement, you must have provided at least 119 hours of employment and at least 102 hours of training.

Students receiving only workplace-based training

SBAT students who only receive workplace-based training must receive a minimum of 13 hours of paid employment per week. The 13 hours must include:

  • for students completing a Certificate II qualification, at least 0.5 hours of training per week
  • for students completing a Certificate III or higher qualification, at least 1 hour of training per week.

This can be calculated as average over 1, 2 or 4 weeks. For example, if you employed a student in a workplace-based SBAT for a Certificate III qualification, they must receive either:

  • over 1 week, 13 hours of employment that includes 1 hour of training
  • over 2 weeks, 26 hours of employment that includes 2 hours of training
  • over 4 weeks, 52 hours of employment that includes 4 hours of training.

Continuing training after leaving school

SBAT training contracts can continue as a part-time or full-time apprenticeship or traineeship after the student has left school.

You can continue to provide employment and training until the apprentice or trainee has completed their off-the-job training and become fully competent on-the-job.

An SBAT student may be able to complete their VCE or VPC course without completing their training contract or the entire VET qualification. In this situation, you should contact their RTO and school to find out what training they need to complete the VCE or VPC.

For information about converting an SBAT student to a part-time or full-time apprentice or trainee, contact your Apprenticeship Network provider:

For more information about completion, see:

Training schemes and more information

Only some training schemes are approved for delivery as an SBAT. For more information, see:

For more information about your responsibilities and a checklist, see:

For more information about SBATs from the Department of Education, see: