Our approach to apprenticeship training is different from the conventional models being used elsewhere in the flooring industry. We have consulted widely with employers, manufacturers and other industry experts to find out which areas of the more traditional approaches to apprenticeships are not living up to their expectations, and what we can do to improve the outcomes for all stakeholders.
The main areas we have focused our efforts on are outlined below. We believe that these features help to make the Academy’s apprenticeship training program more relevant, up-to-date and comprehensive than any other college is able to offer. The strategies we have developed to deliver high-quality training and carry out rigorous assessment events are designed to turn out professional tradespeople who you will be proud to have working for your customers.
1. Flexibility in duration.
We are aware that motivated, high-performing apprentices are capable of finishing their training in less time than is generally allowed for an apprenticeship. This means an apprentice could complete the formal training program within two years.
At the end of this program, the apprentice will still need to work under supervision – possibly for another year or more – until they complete all the workplace experience requirements, but we will
help them to achieve the full trade qualification as soon as they have proven their abilities as a competent operator.
2. High quality trainers.
The front line trainer in our apprenticeship program is the apprentice’s own workplace supervisor. We will train up the supervisor with the necessary trainer and assessor skill set to allow them to deliver on-the-job training during the normal course of the apprentice’s on-site work. They will also be fully supported by the Academy’s staff with technical assistance, mentoring sessions and professional development courses.
In addition to the day-to-day guidance and instruction provided by the workplace trainer, the Academy will provide a range of specialist training blocks and support services to the apprentice throughout their apprenticeship. These include three residential workshops run by the Academy’s specialist trainers, and periodic masterclasses involving Australia’s leading product manufacturers
3. The support network.
We are strong believers in maximising the value of the ‘learning community’ that surrounds each apprentice. This community is made up of all the people who play a role in teaching, guiding and encouraging them, including their trainers, staff members of the Academy, Choices Flooring alliance partners, and of course you as their employer.
Our training strategies place a lot of emphasis on utilising the collective strengths of all members of the apprentice’s learning community so that together we can provide an integrated, holistic approach to developing the apprentice’s skills and industry knowledge.