Fees and charges – Skills Assure information
Student contribution fees
Student contribution fees, as defined in Appendix 2, are the non-government financial contribution to the cost of the training and assessment services provided by the SAS, (the fee is paid to the SAS). (SAS = Skills Assure Supplier – i.e. the RTO)
- The SAS must detail its fees and charges policy, including full costs, method of collection, refunds, and exemptions prior to enrolment and provide access to this written policy to apprentices and trainees.
- The SAS must retain evidence of student contribution fees charged and collected for all students, except for those students deemed as fully exempt. In addition, evidence must be retained for all students whose circumstances have been deemed as totally or partially exempt from student contribution fees.
- Student contribution fees under the User Choice program are set at $1.60 per nominal hour for each unit of competency/module to be calculated at the commencement of the unit of competency/module. Student contribution fees may be adjusted annually and all SASs will be informed by the department of any changes to the student contribution fees.
- The SAS must not charge more than the student contribution fee amounts contained in this policy, except as required periodically by the department.
- The SAS may only charge less than the student contribution fee if in accordance with the full or partial exemption requirements described below.
- When the participant converts from a school-based apprentice or trainee to a full-time or part-time apprenticeship or traineeship, student contribution fees must be charged for training and assessment for any units of competency not yet commenced. This does not apply when the participant is a Year 12 graduate and is undertaking a high priority qualification as identified by the department.
- Where the SAS must collect a student contribution fee, it may be paid on behalf of the student by their employer or a third party unrelated to the SAS, but cannot be paid or waived by the SAS (whether directly or indirectly), unless approved in writing by the department.
Partial exemption — tuition fees
The SAS must charge 40 per cent of the student contribution fee where the participant falls into one or more of the following exemption categories:
- The participant was or will be under 17 years of age at the end of February in the year in which the SAS provides training, and the participant is not at school and has not completed year 12.
- The participant holds a Health Care Card or Pensioner Concession Card issued under Commonwealth law, or is the partner or a dependant of a person who holds a Health Care Card or Pensioner Concession Card, and is named on the card.
- The participant issues the SAS with an official form under Commonwealth law confirming that the participant, his or her partner or the person of whom the participant is a dependant, is entitled to concessions under a Health Care Card or Pensioner Concession Card.
- The participant is an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander person. Acceptable evidence is as stated on the Training Contract and AVETMISS VET Enrolment Form.
Full exemption — tuition fees
The SAS may apply full exemption from the student contribution fee where the participant falls into one or more of the following exemption categories:
- Where payment of the student contribution fee would cause extreme financial hardship, then the SAS may waive these fees.
i. The fee waiver process should be in place at the time of the participant’s enrolment.
ii. The SAS must have a reasonable internal process to manage an appeal about the outcome of an application under financial hardship.
- Where the Queensland Government, as represented by the departmental officer responsible for the User Choice budget, advises in writing that fees are optional. On receipt of such advice, the SAS may choose not to collect the student contribution fee. In this circumstance, any decision by the SAS not to collect fees does not create a liability for the department. The SAS may not
apply for reimbursement by the department of fee revenue foregone.
Refer to the User Choice 2020-21 Qualification and Price List, as published on the department’s website, for information on where fee exemptions are applicable.
The SAS must apply full exemption from the student contribution fee where the participant falls into one or more of the following exemption categories:
(a) where credit transfer/national recognition has been applied to a unit of competency/module
(b) the participant is a school-based apprentice or trainee
(c) the participant is undertaking a qualification as part of the Skilling Queenslanders for Work – Work Skills Traineeship program.
Free training for Year 12 graduates
The SAS must not charge a student contribution fee to a Year 12 graduate who:
- commences an apprenticeship/traineeship within 12 months of completing Year 12 (that is, by the end of the calendar year following completion of Year 12), and
- meets the participant eligibility in 2.2.2, and;
- enrols in a high priority qualification identified by the department.
The student contribution fee for free training for Year 12 graduates will now be met by the department as outlined in Table 3 — payment codes (except for qualifications where the student contribution fee is met by Construction Skills Queensland for continuing students only with a unit of competency start date before 1 October 2015; refer to www.csq.org.au for list of qualifications).
The SAS must retain evidence of participants who are deemed to have completed Year 12 in Queensland and hold a Senior Statement issued by the Queensland Curriculum and Assessment Authority, or equivalent certification.