Australian School Based Apprenticeships (ASbA) FAQ

This page was last updated on:24/4/2020 at 18:42
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COVID-19 has brought significant challenges for RTOs, employers and learners. However the training sector has in-built flexibility that in many instances allows a transition to alternative delivery modes. RTOs are able to incorporate e-Learning into their delivery model if this complies with the training package rules. It is for RTOs to determine how they deliver the training that complies with training packages and training contracts, and meets the needs of learners and employers. A range of solutions to continue with training are available to parties when circumstances change. Please contact – DoE AsbA unit for all school based programs, and Skills Tasmania Workforce Training Consultants for all other apprentice/trainee matters.

What’s the advice for school-based apprentices undertaking training through TasTAFE?

  • Like all TasTAFE courses some parts will be delivered online, your teacher will advise you.
  • For information about TasTAFE campuses and training sites, visit the TasTAFE website.

Does studying at home affect a student’s training contract obligations for their apprenticeship/traineeship?

  • No, studying at home through a Registered Training Organisation will not affect the apprenticeship/traineeship. However, this may change if the apprentice/trainee is no longer able to attend work.
  • To discuss what this means, please contact the Australian Apprenticeship Support Network (AASN) in the first instance: MAS National 1300 627 628; MEGT 136 348 or Apprenticeship Support Australia 1300 363 831(for some trainees).
  • Additional information on employment requirements can be found on page 19  of the TTAC Policies & Guidelines.

Can a contract be suspended rather than cancelled?

  • Skills Tasmania are able to suspend training contracts for a set amount of time. They can also approve changes to the training contract, for example, reduce the minimum hours that an employer must guarantee. All suspensions or changes must be approved by Skills Tasmania.
  • To discuss what this further please contact your Australian Apprenticeship Support Network (AASN): MAS National 1300 627 628; MEGT 136 348 or Apprenticeship Support Australia 1300 363 831(for some trainees)
  • Additional information about suspensions and changes can be found pages 16 and 17 in the TTAC Policies & Guidelines

Can an ASbA student still participate in their place of work?

  • Depending on the industry the apprentice or trainee works in they still may be permitted or required to attend work.
  • Contact the workplace directly about whether the apprentice/trainee should attend work and what is expected during this time. Workplaces should be operating on the advice from the Tasmanian Public Health Service.
  • For regularly updated health advice, please see the Tasmanian Department of Health Important Information page and the Australian Government Department of Health website.
  • Any further concerns, please contact the Public Health Hotline on 1800 671 738

If a student’s ASbA has been cancelled, do they need to enrol in additional subjects at school?

  • Students doing their ASbA during school hours should speak to their school-based facilitator about what courses they can do, now that the ASbA has been cancelled.  This is to make sure they are still doing a full-time course load.
  • Students doing their ASbA after school hours may not have any impact on their course load.  They should still, however, speak to their school-based facilitator to make sure they are doing the correct amount of course hours for their current load.

What are an ASbA student’s leave entitlements, can they take leave from their ASbA?

  • Students should speak to the employer or Human Resources department about what leave they are entitled to.
  • For further information, please refer to the Fair work Commission or the Fair Work Ombudsman for any employment advice.

Who can ASbA students contact for support?

  • Please contact the Schools ASbA Facilitator if any support is needed during this difficult time, or contact the Apprenticeship Network Provider. MAS National 1300 627 628 or MEGT 136 348 or Apprenticeship Support Australia 1300 363 831 (for some trainees).
  • If a student is unsure of who to contact or are having trouble making contact with any of the above support, please contact the Department of Education’s ASbA Program Officer in your region:
    • North: Amanda Barker 0436 926 817
    • North West: Reharn Morris 0409 067 045
    • South: Merrin Juliff 0418 953 981

Can Apprenticeship Network Providers (ANP) continue to send School Endorsement Form (SEF) for Government School Students to the Department of Education’s ASbA team for processing and approval?

  • Yes, ANPs can continue to send School Endorsement Forms (SEF) for Government School Students to the asba.admin@education.tas.gov.au for processing and approval.

Can Australian Network Providers (ANP) facilitate virtual sign-ups of apprentices and trainees?

  • Yes, Australian Network Providers have been granted approval to conduct visual virtual electronic sign-ups due to COVID-19.
  • Please speak to an ANP if you have any questions regarding this process.  
  • MAS National 1300 627 628  or  MEGT 136 348

Can Australian Network Providers (ANP) still facilitate the face-to-face sign-up of apprentice and trainees?

  • Sign-ups can continue to be conducted face to face where requested; however, our teams must exercise necessary precautions and follow recommended Tasmanian Department of Health guidelines.

If my Registered Training Organisation (RTO) has placed my Australian School-based Apprenticeship/Traineeship (ASbA) training on hold, does that mean my ASbA work is also on hold?