By: Edge Employment Solutions  11-Aug-2011
Keywords: Training, Disability, Vocational Education

An apprenticeship is a structured employment and training program, usually of three to four years duration, that leads to becoming a qualified tradesperson. The training combines practical experience at work with off the job training with a Registered Training Organisation (RTO). An RTO can be either a private provider or a TAFEWA college. Financial incentives are available to eligible employers to encourage them to take on an apprentice. An apprentice earns an income, gains work experience and has the opportunity to learn new skills in a hands-on learning environment.

On successful completion of the apprenticeship the apprentice gains a nationally recognised qualification and a trade certificate.

Employers who take on apprentices (including many who currently employ workers with disability through EDGE) are expected to have a strong commitment to training and to provide the necessary support and encouragement throughout the traineeship. Naturally, the employer and the apprentice will be assisted in this regard by EDGE staff.

EDGE established the first apprenticeship program for people with disability in Western Australia in October 1999. It has since assisted more than 250 people with all types of disability undertake apprenticeships.

EDGE has established partnerships with three of Perth's biggest apprenticeship providers (Hospitality Group Training, Apprenticeships Australia and WA Group Training Scheme) which employ many hundreds of apprentices and then place them with employers in a wide range of industries. The partnerships are mutually beneficial because Group Training Organisations can open doors to prospective employers and EDGE can provide on-the-job and off-the-job support to apprentices with disability employed by Group Training Organisations.

EDGE is also able to secure funding through disability apprenticeship subsidy programs that offer generous wage subsidies for employers and funding for workplace modifications, aids and equipment, extra tutoring, interpreter or note-taker support, and mentor support.

Keywords: Disability, Disability Employment, Disability Employment Network, Training, Vet Providers, Vocational Education,

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A traineeship is a structured employment and training program, usually of one to two years duration (depending on whether it