Skill First Program

To be eligible for a State and Federal Government subsidised place under the Skills First Program in 2017, you must meet the criteria below or use the Skills First Eligibility Flow Chart to assist you.

1. You must have a physical presence in Victoria whilst undertaking the qualification.

Please bring Proof of Residency to your enrolment appointment, including your driver’s licence or any other document which shows that you reside in Victoria.

2. You must meet citizenship/residency requirements and be in one of the following categories:

  • Australian Citizen
  • Permanent Resident
  • New Zealand Citizen
  • Asylum seeker/victim of human trafficking (must have ASRC/ARC referral).
  • You must bring one of the following Proof of Citizenship/Residency items to your enrolment appointment (original documents or certified photocopies):
  • Green Medicare Card
  • Australian Birth Certificate
  • Current Australian Passport
  • Current New Zealand Passport
  • Naturalisation Certificate
  • Formal papers from DIAC confirming Permanent Residency

Please note: If you are aged under 20 years*, you must also bring one of the following Proof of Age documents to your enrolment appointment (only if the Proof of Citizenship/Residency above does not include your date of birth):

  • Current Driver’s Licence
  • Current Learner’s Permit
  • Proof of Age card
  • ‘Keypass’ card.

*Age is your age as at 1st January in the year in which you are starting the course.

3. You must:

  • be upskilling to a higher level qualification
  • only commence two Skills First Program funded courses in a calendar year
  • only commence training in the same level qualification twice in a lifetime (recommencement in the same qualification at the same or different training provider do not apply)
  • not count accredited courses with the title ‘Course in……’ and courses on the Foundation Skills List

Please be aware that accessing your Skills First Program entitlement may impact your access to future government subsidised training.

4. You must meet ‘upskilling’ requirements for certain cohorts:

  • Under the Skills First Program, if you are aged 15-19 years you are automatically eligible for a government subsidised place, regardless of which course level you enrol in.
  • If you are aged 20+ enrolling in any other qualification (i.e. Skills Creation, Skills Building, Skills Deepening and Traineeships), you are only eligible for a government subsidised place providing you are upskilling (i.e. you are enrolling in a course that is at a higher level than any prior Australian qualification you have fully completed).
  • Please note: When assessing your highest prior qualifications completed, you must take following into account:
  • Foundation courses may be excluded from consideration when assessing your prior highest completed qualification level.
    (i.e. Certificates in ESL or General Education for Adults, VCAL Intermediate & Foundation)
  • VET courses completed as part of a VET in Schools Program (VETIS) during your secondary education may be excluded from consideration when assessing your highest completed qualification.
  • Courses completed overseas, where no formal AQF equivalency has been determined, may be excluded from consideration when assessing a your highest completed qualification.
  • When assessing your highest completed qualification, a Vocational Graduate Certificate or Vocational Graduate Diploma course is considered to be at a higher level than a Bachelor degree.

5. You must not be in one of the following Eligibility Exclusion categories:

  • A student enrolled in a school and seeking to enrol in accredited vocational education and training (VET) that has been arranged by, or in conjunction with, the school (excluding a School Based Apprentice/Trainee).Government schools are responsible for funding these opportunities for VET through their Student Resource Package (SRP) allocation, including targeted VET in Schools funding. Non-government schools make similar decisions for students on the basis of the resources available to them. This, of course, does not preclude an individual of school age accessing VET opportunities separate to and outside of their school education.
  • A prisoner within the meaning of the Corrections Act 1986 who is held at any one of the following custodial settings as outlines in the Service Agreement; A person who is detained under the Mental Health Act 1986; or the Crimes (Mental Impairment and Unfitness to be Tried) Act 1997 or the Sentencing Act 1991 at the Thomas Embling Hospital.
  • A person who is detained (other than on weekend detention) under the Children, Youth and Families Act 2005 or the Sentencing Act 1991 or who is held on remand in one of the following youth justice facilities as outlined in the Service Agreement.

Eligibility Exemptions

Exemptions may be granted by the Commission only for individuals who do not meet the eligibility requirements.

  • Asylum Seekers and Victims of Human Trafficking: Initiative Individuals referred to training under the Asylum Seekers and Victims of Human Trafficking Initiative must meet all Skills First Program eligibility criteria except the citizenship/residency requirements.
  • Workers in Transition Program:  Individuals referred to training under the Workers in Transition Program must meet all Skills First Program eligibility criteria except the ‘upskilling’ requirement.
  • Individuals referred to training under the Workers in Transition Program must present to Gowrie Victoria with a Workers in Transition Program Eligibility Letter from the Department of Education and Early Childhood Development (the Department) and a copy of the separation certificate from their previous employer.

Enrolment for eligible learners is under the Skills First Program and may impact access to further government subsidised training. For additional information regarding the Skills First Program please contact our Training team at Gowrie Victoria on (03) 9362 2210.