Case Study – Cardinia Shire School Based Apprenticeships


Cardinia Shire is one of the fastest growing municipalities in Victoria, located on the South-East fringe of metropolitan Melbourne.

The council employs almost 400 staff across a range of full and part time positions. Given the rapid growth of the area the council recognises the importance of channelling young people into the council to address future employment needs and to encourage students to consider the Career Pathway opportunities that exist within Local Government.

In 2010 with the assistance of the South East LLEN four students were employed as School Based Apprentices within the council. Based on the success of these students a further five students were enrolled in the following year 2011.  

Initially the plan was to take in School Based Apprentices who would do a Cert III in Local Government however, because this would limit the students’ future pathways it was decided by council a Cert III in Business would be more beneficial allowing the students to work in various office environments.

How it works

Students complete paid formal on the job training at the council offices one day a week, and attend on one other day visited by a registered training provider (LINK employment and Training) to complete the study component. They also attend school three days a week to obtain their Victorian Certificate of Applied Learning (VCAL) certificate. Students are given the opportunity to work in different departments of the council throughout the apprenticeship.

Positive outcomes for the students:

  • Students gain a recognised qualification
  • Students gain a VCAL certificate
  • Students gain real life work experience
  • Students gain an advantage for job opportunities within council


Positive outcomes for the council: 

  • Injection of young people into the council
  • Training students to council expectations
  • Promotion of career pathway opportunities within Local Government
  • Opportunities for council employees to mentor young people

 The program has been successful with Council employees finding the students to be a very valuable part to the council. The program has also been a fine example of how Community Partnerships can be developed and sustained with the council confidently working with schools to recruit students for 2011 without the assistance of the South East LLEN WLC.