The Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET) promulgated the SETA Workplace-Based Learning Programme Agreement Regulations (2018) on Friday, 16 November 2018 in the Government Gazette No 42037. The new Regulations came into force on 1 April 2019, replacing the Learnership Regulations (2007).
The Learnership Agreement will no longer be in use, it has been replaced by the Workplace-Based Learning Programme Agreement and the purpose of the SETA Work-Based Learning Programme Agreement Regulations is to provide for-
- the addition of the terms “candidacy”, and “internship”, which are common forms of work-based learning;
- the preparation, submission, registration and management of work-based learning programme agreements.
The definition of learning programmes has been expanded upon to include:
|Apprenticeship||A period of workplace-based learning culminating in an occupational qualification for a listed trade.|
|Learnership||A period of workplace-based learning culminating in an occupational qualification or part qualification.|
|Candidacy||A period of workplace-based learning undertaken by a graduate as part of the requirement for registration as a professional in the required professional designation as stipulated by a professional body.|
|Internship for the “N” Diploma||A period of workplace-based learning undertaken as part of the requirement for the “N” Diploma.|
|Student internship: Category A||A period of workplace-based learning undertaken as part of the requirement for the Diploma, National Diploma, Higher Certificate or Advanced Certificate as a vocational qualification stipulated in the Higher Education Qualifications Sub-Framework (HEQSF).|
|Student internship: Category B||A period of workplace-based learning undertaken as part of the requirement for a professional qualification.|
|Student internship: Category C||A period of workplace-based learning undertaken as part of the requirement for the Occupational Qualifications of the Quality Council for Trades and Occupations (QCTO).|
|Student internship||A period of workplace-based learning for a person who is enrolled at an education and training institution for a SAQA registered qualification and may include vacation work.|
|Graduate internship||A period of workplace-based learning for the purposes of allowing a person who has completed a post school qualification to gain workplace experience or exposure to enhance competency and/or employability. This may include academic staff with existing qualifications that need industrial exposure or experience.|
Registration of Agreements
The learner’s details must be captured on the relevant SETA Learning Management Information System (LMIS), and the relevant documentation submitted on the LMIS. The original documents must be couriered to the relevant SETA department.
The required supporting documents include:
- Originally certified ID document
- Originally certified highest qualification
- Contract of employment (unemployed learners) or confirmation of employment (employed learners)
- If the learner has a disability – a letter verifying the learner’s disability in terms of the Employment Equity Act
- Proof of residence
The Workplace-Based Learning Programme Agreement and all supporting documents must be received within 30 working days of the learner’s signature date. Should the submission of the original completed agreement not be submitted within the 30-working day period, the application will be closed.
On receipt of the original completed agreement and supporting documents the relevant SETA will confirm receipt in writing indicating the date of receipt. This is only confirming that the document has been received by the SETA, the SETA will still need to verify the document in order to register the learners.
The agreement start date is determined by the date on which the SETA registers the agreement.
The agreement end date is subject to the number of credits of the qualification or part qualification or duration of the curriculum.
Conditional placement of learners
Once a learner has signed an agreement, the employer must conditionally place the learner on the relevant workplace-based learning programme pending the SETA’s registration and compliance process.
If the learner is unemployed prior to signing the agreement, a contract of employment comes into effect when the learner is conditionally placed on the learning programme.
Once the SETA registers the agreement, the employer must confirm the learner’s placement.
If the SETA declines to register the agreement, the employer must terminate the learner’s conditional placement whether or not funding has been secured.
Additional requirements for a group of employers (Lead and Host employers)
One of the employers is identified in the agreement as the lead employer and that employer is geographically located within South Africa;
- The lead employer has signed the agreement and all other employer parties are listed in an annexure to the agreement
- All employers who are party to the agreement are approved for the structured work experience component
- The lead employer undertakes:
- to ensure compliance with the employer’s duties in terms of the agreement; and
- to ensure the implementation of the agreement at the workplace of the other employer parties.
Additional requirements for a group of providers
One provider is identified in the agreement as the lead provider and is geographically located within South Africa.
Every provider who is party to the agreement is accredited or the components and who have signed an annexure to the agreement.
The lead provider undertakes to ensure compliance with the provider’s duties and ensures that provider parties provide the relevant curriculum components.
Ensure that the accreditation status of the provider parties are maintained for the duration of the agreement.
Completion of agreement
When the end date specified in an agreement has been reached, the SETA must:
- inform the learner and the employer that the agreement has been completed and advise on any outstanding matters relating to it; and
- if the learner concerned has completed the workplace-based learning programme, inform the Department after a period of six months in a format determined by the Department if the learner was employed full time or part-time by an employer.
If you require any further information on the SETA Workplace-Based Learning Programme Agreement Regulations and how to implement it in your organisation, please contact me on 021 41 1617 or via email.