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Parliamentary Questions

Question Without Notice No. 514 asked in the Legislative Council on 21 May 2020 by Hon Donna Faragher

Minister responding: Hon S.M. Ellery
Parliament: 40 Session: 1

Answered on 21 May 2020

CORONAVIRUS — SCHOOLS — WORKPLACE LEARNING PROGRAMS

514. Hon DONNA FARAGHER to the Minister for Education and Training:

I refer to workplace learning programs offered to students in secondary schools.

(1) Will the minister provide an outline of the current restrictions that apply to the full workplace programs offered?

(2) Will the minister advise when restrictions for each of these programs are expected to be eased?

(3) Will the minister advise whether any additional measures have been implemented to ensure year 12 students who are completing a VET qualification are not disadvantaged as a result of restrictions arising from the COVID-19 pandemic?

Hon SUE ELLERY replied:

I thank the honourable member for some notice of the question.

(1) Where it is critical for students to take part in work placements to complete their certificate qualifications, those placements can continue. Other programs have been deferred. The following outlines the restrictions applied to the four workplace programs, based on the advice of the Chief Health Officer. School-based traineeships and apprenticeships can proceed but schools must confirm that employers will provide a COVID-19-safe work environment consistent with Department of Health guidelines. VET certificate course work placement is limited to year 12 students and can proceed only when the training cannot be rescheduled. Schools must ensure a COVID-19-safe work environment consistent with the Department of Health guidelines. Work experience has been deferred based on health advice. Structured workplace learning has been deferred based on health advice.

(2) The decision to ease current restrictions will be based on health advice and government deliberations.

(3) Year 12 students will not be disadvantaged. When the work placement component of the VET course cannot be rescheduled to later in the year, a year 12 student can undertake it now. The School Curriculum and Standards Authority will apply special considerations for any student who is unable to complete a work placement to ensure that achievement of their Western Australian Certificate of Education will not be impacted.