St Patrick’s Technical College is part of an extensive network of industry associations, employers, training providers and group training organisations. This presents unique opportunities for our students to start their trade careers through School Based Apprenticeships and Traineeships (SBAT).
It is important to note that the School Based Apprenticeships and Traineeships at St Patrick’s Technical College are very different.
Due to the flexible approach the College takes to course structure and timetabling, a St Patrick’s Technical College student-apprentice can spend up to 42 weeks full-time during Year 12 in paid employment and training PLUS they will still complete the requirements of the SACE.
School Based Apprenticeships or Traineeships
A School Based Apprenticeship or Traineeship (SBAT) is where students start working on an apprenticeship or traineeship (paid employment) and undertake vocational training while remaining enrolled at the College to complete their SACE requirements. SBATs are a great way to earn and learn, gain workplace skills, undertake a nationally recognised qualification, and get a head start in a career.
St Patrick’s Technical College takes pride in its unique SBAT model. The College works with the student and their employer to provide a flexible timetable, accommodating both the SACE and apprenticeship requirements.
In Year 10 and 11, apprentices work with their employer in a part-time capacity, and if required, increasing their working hours during school holidays. Year 12 apprentices work to a full-time capacity, spending up to a minimum of 42 weeks at work and returning to the College for a maximum of 6 weeks to complete their SACE requirements.
The College’s dedicated Apprenticeship & Traineeship Manager is available to provide support and assistance throughout the process, making the transition a seamless process for all parties involved.
Gaining an Apprenticeship
The College has a primary focus on helping students succeed through an apprenticeship, traineeship or study pathway. Although an apprenticeship cannot be guaranteed, our Apprenticeship & Traineeship Manager sources and promotes opportunities, works with students, families and employers to assist in increasing their chances of success.
Students who successfully gain an apprenticeship will either remain enrolled at the College, completing their Year 10, 11 or 12 SACE requirements as a school based apprentice or trainee (SBAT), or will choose to exit the College due to gaining a full-time apprenticeship.
It is the aim of St Patrick’s Technical College to have as many students as possible placed into an apprenticeship by the time they complete their South Australian Certificate of Education (SACE).
Year 10 at St Patrick’s Technical College is a foundation, exploration and discovery phase. The curriculum has been developed to specifically to build students’ skills and general capabilities, beginning a journey that will assist them to find accurate and reliable careers information and advice on learning, training and work pathways.
Through the comprehensive Year 10 career exploration program and seven weeks of Work Experience, students explore their trade interests, gain work-ready skills, and can apply for apprenticeship and traineeship opportunities.
All subjects in the trade program at St Patrick’s Technical College are developed specifically for the individual trade courses. The programs are pre-selected for students and ensure that students are eligible to meet all the compulsory SACE requirements and complete the required 200 credits.
An integral component of each course* is training in a Certificate II pre-vocational course.
*Information Technology students undertake a Certificate III pre-vocational course.
Pre-apprenticeship and pre-vocational courses provide pathways into apprenticeships and traineeships through which students gain tertiary qualifications. The College offers eight VET courses including Automotive, Construction, Electrotechnology, Food & Hospitality, Hair & Beauty, Information Technology, Metals & Engineering, and Plumbing.
The training students experience can act as a bridge between school and entry into further tertiary qualifications. Each competency has an allocated number of nominal hours required to successfully achieve the competency. These hours are transferred into credits for achieving the SACE.
Year 11 is campus-based and students use the time to generate basic skills in their trade as well as undertaking up to seven weeks Work Experience. Work Experience is considered a very important component in students gaining an apprenticeship for the following reasons:
- provides exposure to the real world of work;
- reinforces that students have made the correct career choice;
- identifies important criteria for employment (e.g. transport, work hours, teamwork, etc.); and
- establishes relationships that could lead to an apprenticeship.
Apprenticeship opportunities are promoted to Year 11 students and can be commenced either part-time while remaining at the College to complete the SACE as part of the SBAT model, or full-time.
Apprenticeships for students are promoted to all students across Year 10 to 12.
Our unique SBAT model enables students in Year 12 to work virtually full time and attend College for six weeks during their final year, typically in one week blocks, in order to complete the requirements of their SACE.
Apprenticeships are gained in a number of ways:
- Directly by the student via the student’s own contacts or networks.
- Directly by the College utilising companies, organisations, and industry with whom the College has a relationship.
- Employers contacting the College seeking to employ an apprentice.
- Students being offered an apprenticeship following a period of work experience.
The main point of contact to facilitate an apprenticeship is the College’s Apprenticeship & Traineeship Manager who will:
- promote apprenticeship and traineeship vacancies to students;
- liaise with potential employers to find suitable students for vacancies;
- organise visits to the College for employers to address, interview and select students;
- promote the College’s school-based apprenticeship model to employers;
- attend all Contract of Training sign-ups of students to ensure the best interests of the students are being met; and
- liaise with students / families / employers should problems arise during the school-based apprentice period.
Since the College’s opening in 2007, St Patrick’s Technical College has been successful in the commencements of more than 1381 apprenticeships while students are still enrolled. This represents two-thirds of students being employed in an apprenticeship by the time they leave the College.
Although an apprenticeship cannot be guaranteed, every effort is made to maximise apprenticeship opportunities for College students.