The learnership contract must be entered into between the learner, the provider/s of structured learning and organisation/s providing work experience. The learnership contract needs to be registered with a Seta to be eligible for public support.
Where the work experience is to be provided within the context of a job creation programme the contract will need to be entered into between the contractor, the learner and the accredited provider of training and then registered with the relevant Seta.
Where the work experience is to be provided within the context of entrepreneurial development, then either the provider of the training or the learners themselves will have to demonstrate that the contract work to be entered into as part of the training process complies with the range of experience required by the qualification. Such contracts will have to be in place prior to the registration of the learnership with the Seta.
The following issues are likely to affect the successful delivery of learning within the learnership system.
Learnerships are conditional upon both components being fulfilled: where there is no work experience, there cannot be a learnership. However the relative emphasis given to structured learning and work experience will be determined by the relevant Seta.
Work experience may be at a single workplace, cluster of workplaces or in a development or job creation project - provided that the learning outcomes are achieved.
The possibility of "group training schemes," where groups of employers could be encouraged to come together and provide training, should be investigated. These could be initiated anywhere - by providers, by employment service agencies, by companies - but once established, will be registered with Setas.
The structured learning components of learnerships should be brought as close as possible to the work experience to promote the best learning synergy. For those in the industry this could mean providing theory at an accredited site in the workplace. Trainers could travel to industry instead of learners travelling to provider institutions. Open or technologically enhanced learning could contribute to lowering the unit costs of structured learning.
Where possible, learnership should start with a general overview of the sector before specialised training is offered. For example, learnership in the building industry could start with a general overview of the industry before going into sub-field specialisation such as carpentry or brick-laying.
Assessment should always be considered as an integral part of learnership. In particular, recognition of prior learning (RPL) should enable a learner to gain credit of any component of learnership.
Learnership could be integrated into the learning choice available to scholars in the further education and training band provided where the necessary work experience is available.
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