The ACT Careers Association (ACTCA) is concerned the implementation of the ACT Board of Senior Secondary Studies (BSSS) E and C course classification changes, will adversely impact on the recognition, uptake and completion of Australian School Based Apprenticeships (ASBA) by ACT school students.
Discussions with the BSSS revealed that the 2024 implementation of the Review of E and C Course classifications: Final Report will result in the BSSS no longer accrediting points to students for the on-the-job component of their ASBA. The ACTCA believes that this will result in ASBA students being disadvantaged.
Ms Hastings, President of the ACTCA said, “The course classification changes will act as a disincentive for students to include an ASBA as part of their senior secondary studies. Students will not be rewarded by BSSS for their 9-17 hours per week on-the-job component of their ASBA, and this will result in increased complexity and unpredictability when completing an ACT Senior Secondary Certificate. The ACTCA will not support any change that diminishes the value of this nationally endorsed, federally funded and widely accepted vocational education and training (VET) program.”
The ACTCA recommends that ASBAs are immediately excluded from the E and C course classification changes and the current ASBA points allocation processes remain in place. This will ensure accurate and reliable career information is provided to students in years 9, 10 and 11 who are considering an ASBA pathway. Furthermore, a new BSSS ASBA policy should be developed which is guided by the collection and analysis of qualitative and quantitative data, best practice and meaningful consultation.
Ms Hastings stressed the importance of ACTCA’s role in supporting school career development practitioners to help young people make informed career decisions. She said, “only qualified, and professionally current career development practitioners should be providing career guidance. A decision to include an ASBA as part of year 10, 11 and 12 study requires more than just a conversation. Our young people deserve ongoing career guidance, delivered by school career practitioners who are experts in both education and career development. The ACT Careers Association will continue to work with the ACT Government and relevant stakeholders to advocate for young people to have opportunities to build their preferred career pathway whilst at school.”