COURSE PARTICIPANT HANDBOOK
Course Participant Handbook
Our purpose is ‘to forever change safety in the world, one experience at a time’. We believe in hands on ‘memorable’ and practical fire, safety and rescue training. We recruit only the best people and we truly love what we do!
We prepared a Participant’s Handbook for participants enrolling in training programs with Fire and Safety Australia (FSA). In line with the Standards for Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) we are required to provide information about our policies and procedures to clients and participants before enrolment—this Handbook does that, and informs you about the services we provide and what we expect from our participants.
Please read through our Handbook below or download it here: Course Participant Handbook 2017.
In this handbook, you will find information regarding:
- The structure and operations of FSA
- Training & assessment
- Procedures for recognition of prior learning
- Complaints and appeals processes
- Policies regarding safety and discrimination
- Participant services and the privacy of your information
We provide a range of training courses to organisations wishing to increase the safety-related competencies of their personnel both directly and indirectly through our partnering organisations.
Some of our training leads to nationally recognised qualifications and units of competency and where applicable our practical training environment closely resembles the workplace to provide participants with the opportunity to receive training and obtain competency with practical ‘hands on’ activities.
This handbook does not provide you with specific information about any specific course offered by FSA. That information is contained in our website or our course brochures supplied separately.
Fire and Safety Australia is regulated by the Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA) which assures nationally consistent, high-quality training and assessment services for the clients of Australia’s vocational education and training (VET) system.
Here are some fast FSA facts:
- In 2016, we trained over 40,000 people Australia wide
- In 2016, we performed over 8,000+ Emergency Services Officer, Paramedic & Safety Officer shifts throughout the resources industry in Australia
- In 2016, we performed over 250 days of Fire & Safety consulting
- We have a national team of over 90 people and training facilities located in every State and Territory of Australia and we have over 400+ years of combined emergency services and safety experience
- We were the 12th Fastest Growing Company on the BRW FAST 100 list in 2012
- We are experts in tailoring training to the requirements of our customers to ensure active participant engagement and ‘hands on’ practical training
Our team exists to help you keep your team safe, please talk to us about putting together a site specific tailored training program to ensure that your team retains the fire and safety skills and knowledge required to keep safe at work.
The staff at FSA are available to answer any questions that you may have regarding the information in this handbook and can be contacted on 1300 885 530 or email@example.com.
Standards for Registered Training Organisations 2015
Purpose and operation
The objectives of the Standards for Registered Training Organisations 2015 (SRTO) are to ensure nationally consistent, high-quality training and assessment services for the clients of Australia’s Vocational Education and Training (VET) system.
A focus on outcomes
The standards specify the key requirements to be met by Registered Training Organisations (RTO). The standards do not specify detailed processes but explain the outcomes to be achieved through the application of each standard. An RTO must be able to show, through systematic approaches to management and continuous improvement, that it is focused on improving its outcomes in relation to each standard.
Quality Indicators reports support the “outcomes focus” on the standards by giving an overall picture of how well an RTO is meeting client needs.
A systematic approach
A systematic approach to the management and delivery of services helps an RTO to meet the registration requirements throughout the registration period. Systematic approaches are planned, purposeful and repeatable actions to improve products and services for clients.
Continuous improvement is an integral part of the AQF. Continuous improvement processes refer to the continual enhancement of an RTO’s performance so that the changing needs of clients and industry continue to be met. Continuous improvement does not relate to actions to achieve compliance as such actions are considered rectifications.
An effective quality system includes processes that encourage and achieve continuous improvement. For RTOs, this means developing a planned and on-going process to systematically review and improve policies, procedures, products and services through analysis of relevant information and collection of data from clients and other interested parties, including staff.
From time to time you may be asked to contribute to feedback for our RTO continuous improvement.
Access and equity
An RTO needs to ensure that its practices are as inclusive as possible and do not unreasonably prevent any clients from accessing its services.
RTOs are subject to legislation pertaining to training and assessment, as well as business practice. The legislation governs the RTO’s obligations to clients and the industry relevant to the training being conducted.
The legislation is continually being revised and amended as the industry changes, and all relevant staff members of the RTO will be made aware of any changes through memos and consultation at regular meetings. Current legislation and Standards for Registered Training Organisations 2015 is available online at www.legislation.gov.au/Details/F2014L01377
- Copyright Act 1968
- Commonwealth Privacy Act 1988 / Privacy Amendment (Private Sector) Act 2000
- Commonwealth Sex Discrimination Act 1984
- Commonwealth Racial Discrimination Act 1975
- Commonwealth Age Discrimination Act 2004
- Commonwealth Disability Discrimination Act 1992
Why Choose FSA?
Our Training Courses
We provide nationally recognised training in all States and Territories Australia wide. We have a dedicated trainer team with well over 400+ years of Emergency Services and Safety experience. We can tailor our training courses to the requirements of your site and we will also ensure that all training includes a substantial amount of ‘hands on’ and practical training. After all, we learn best by doing rather than saying.
- First Aid-All Levels
- Fire Extinguisher Training
- Fire Team Training
- Fire Warden / Chief Warden Training
- Incident Leadership Training
- QLD Fire Safety Advisor
- Compartment Fire Based Training
- Confined Space Entry Training
- Confined Space Rescue Training
- Gas Test Atmospheres
- Breathing Apparatus Training
- Hazardous Substances in the Workplace
- HAZMAT Training
- Height Safety Training
- Tower Rescue Training
- Vertical Rescue Training
- Road Accident Rescue Training
- ERT Training
- Risk Assessment/ JSA Training
- Permit to Work Training
- White Card Induction
- Manual Handling
- Asbestos Awareness, Removal & Assessment
- Slinging and Lifting courses
- Slewing and Non-Slewing Cranes
- EWP Training
- Injury Management and Return to Work Auditing
- WH&S Training for Supervisors
- Health and Safety Committee
- Health and Safety Rep
- Standard 11 Mine Induction Training
- Cert III Mines Rescue Training
- Cert II/III Public Safety (Firefighting)
- Cert IV & Diploma WH&S
Our Consultancy Services
We provide experienced safety and emergency response consultants to help you work through problem areas. We provide solutions and answers to our clients, not just observations.
- Workplace Emergency Procedures (Developing & Reviewing)
- Evacuation Drills & Simulations
- Evacuation Maps (AS3745 Compliant) & Emergency Procedures
- Acting as your Fire Safety Advisor (QLD)
- Working at height audits, procedures and risk assessments
- Confined Space identification audits, procedures & risk assessments
- Rescue Plans
- Emergency Response Team Procedures
Here are 5 reasons why you should choose FSA for all of your safety training and safety consultancy requirements:
100% Money Back Guarantee
If you’re not completely satisfied with the quality and professionalism of our corporate training courses, we can send another trainer to provide the course again FREE OF CHARGE or REFUND YOUR MONEY IN FULL. No questions asked, no hidden conditions – We are the only Fire/Safety/Rescue Registered Training Organisation (RTO) in Australia to offer this!
National Accreditation And Iso9001-2008 Quality Accreditation
- We deliver training courses that are nationally recognised through the Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF).
- We are a Registered Training Organisation (RT0:22250) under Australian Skills Quality Authority.
- Our Quality Management System is accredited to ISO9001-2015
Our trainers are former fire-fighters, emergency services workers or safety professionals. Our personnel have all ‘been there and done that’ and can relate their decades of experience to your classes in an enthusiastic and professional manner. In 2016, we trained over 40,000 people across every State and Territory in Australia and we are on target to train over 100,000 people by 2020!
We Always Put Our Clients First And We Give Our Clients Flexibility For Training Options:
Our team is committed to put the interests and needs of our clients first. Often, we fly our personnel around Australia to meet the needs of our clients at short notice.
We take the time to learn your organisation, safety procedures and your specific equipment. We can tailor our training delivery directly to your requirements and are able to customise training contents to your organisational requirement whilst maintaining the required outcomes for the endorsed Qualification or Unit(s) of Competency.
We Deliver What We Say We Will
We provide first class training and customer experiences every time. We deliver what we say we will. Our friendly administration staff will take the hassle out of booking training and process all paperwork.
Summary of policies and procedures
Some of our RTO policies and procedures are summarised on the following pages. You can obtain further information from our RTO head office or your Trainer.
We are committed to providing high quality training courses and services which safeguard the interest and welfare of course participants. We are also committed to ensuring that participants, employers and industry have the utmost confidence in the integrity, currency and value of certification documents issued by FSA. We do this by providing:
- Current and best practice information and skills for the qualifications for which it has been registered;
- Professional, specialist, skilled and culturally aware Trainers and Assessors with relevant qualifications and vocational competence;
- High quality training material that meets the requirement of training packages and Vocational Education and Training (VET) accredited course;
- Equipment that is commonly used within Industry;
- Flexible and responsive training provided at FSA’s training facilities or client’s workplaces/sites appropriate to the learning and assessment needs of participants;
- Fair, flexible, valid and reliable assessment tools and methods
- Continuous improvement processes developed from constant monitoring, reviewing and acting on participants and stakeholders feedback to provide best practice and relevant services.
We also undertake regular reviews of our management systems, provide opportunities for our staff to undertake professional development and encourage feedback from our staff and partners improve our RTO operation.
For further information visit www.fireandsafetyaustralia.com.au.
FSA, as a Registered Training Organisation, provides services for a range of clients through a fee for service arrangement throughout Australia, strictly adhering to the Standards for Registered Training Organisations 2015 requirement to continue delivering training services of the highest quality to their clients.
FSA recognises the importance and benefits of combining industry experience when striving to deliver programs of highest quality and relevance to the client. Therefore, all trainers and assessors employed or contracted by FSA have demonstrated significant industry experience in addition to obtaining training qualifications, allowing them to provide a professional, well-rounded learning environment for participants. Staff are equipped with the skills to ensure their teaching methods are suitable for all participants, utilising simple language where appropriate to communicate information most effectively.
As a participant with FSA, your feedback is critical to our continuous improvement policy. Along with the formal feedback, participants are encouraged to give feedback throughout their enrolment.
Participants who enrol in a training program with FSA should be aware that they are entering into a contractual agreement. With a view to ensuring all participants are fully aware of their rights and obligations, FSA designed agreements, booking form, enrolment forms, service agreements or similar using a logical format and simple English. This may include, but is not limited to:
- Wording that allows the perspective participant to know what he / she is agreeing to
- Clearly explained disclaimers
- No misleading or deceptive behaviour
- No actions, omissions or dialogue (written or verbal) that may force or coerce the participant
- Fair dealings for disadvantaged participants
On 1 January 2011, the Australian Consumer Law commenced and the Trade Practices Act 1974 was renamed the Competition and Consumer Act 2010.
The Australian Consumer Law provides for:
- National consumer protection and fair-trading laws
- Enhanced enforcement powers and redress mechanisms
- A national unfair contract terms law
- A new national product safety regime and
- A new national consumer guarantees law
Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC)
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission is an independent Australian Government statutory authority. It was formed in 1995 to administer the Trade Practices Act 1974 and the Prices Surveillance Act 1983. The ACCC promotes competition and fair trade in the market place to benefit consumers, business and the community. It also regulates national infrastructure services. Its primary responsibility is to ensure that individuals and businesses comply with the Commonwealth competition, fair trading and consumer protection laws. In fair trading and consumer protection, its role compliments that of the state and territory consumer affairs agencies which administer the mirror legislation of their jurisdictions, and the Competition and Consumer Policy Division of the Commonwealth Treasury, www.accc.gov.au.
What courses can I study with FSA?
FSA strictly adheres to the Standards for Registered Training Organisations with all programs that align to Units of Competency and Qualifications contained in the relevant Training Packages ensuring best practice in service and delivery at all times. Other non-endorsed courses are also available.
How is training delivered?
Training courses with FSA are delivered by:
- Face to face classroom training
- On-site training using actual equipment
- Self -paced external learning
- On-line learning
What are the pre-requisites?
A pre-requisite is a specified training and assessment that must be completed prior to enrolling in a course at FSA. Pre-requisites are specific to individual courses and not all courses have a prescribed prerequisite. Please consult the course outline for your chosen course for pre-requisite information.
What is an entry requirement?
An entry requirement is a requirement set by FSA that must be achieved or provided prior to the commencement of our course. For example, a course which may be required as part of applying for a High-Risk Work Licence will require 2 forms of ID. Entry requirements differ for each course, please consult the course outline for your chosen course for further information.
How do I enrol?
Enrolment is initiated by contacting FSA – phone, email or webpage – and we will provide you the relevant information on your chosen course along with enrolment forms and any other relevant documentation.
Enrolment can be done via contacting customer service, your business development manager or online. Online enrolment does not constitute an automatic acceptance. FSA customer service will enrol potential participants who apply to FSA and who meet the enrolment criteria.
Some of FSA’s training courses have pre-requisites and/ or Entry Requirement which must be met prior to enrolment and co-requisites that may be completed as part of a course. For information on any pre-requisites and/ or Entry Requirement for a particular course, visit FSA’s website or speak to FSA Customer Service.
FSA are unable to provide special assistance with either theoretical or practical component course/ courses. In the event of a Participants requiring special assistance they will be referred to external agencies/ services.
Selection and Admission
Some of our nationally accredited courses include entry requirements that participants must meet and these are outlined in the detailed course information on our website. Some courses also have Numeracy and Literacy requirements, please refer below for further information.
Participants are to comply with their employer stated Fitness for Work policy whilst attending any training course. Trainers reserve the right to suspend from a training course any participant (s) that is disruptive or unsafe.
Some training courses provided may involve physical exertions in conditions that can be mentally and physically stressful. In some courses, it will be inappropriate for injured workers or workers currently involved in Worker’s Compensation claims or rehabilitation activities as part of a return to work plan, to participate.
Our trainers reserve the right to suspend from their training courses participants who are unable to actively participate in the course activities as a result of injury.
Should this situation arise, immediate and discreet contact will be made with the client contact to discuss future training options for the individual concerned.
Where corporate clients book their employees into courses, the purposes of student selection falls to the client rather than FSA, to assess the suitability of their employees to attend this training in accordance with pre-entry requirements.
Numeracy and Literacy
FSA course information and learning materials contain written documentation and limited numerical calculations.
FSA recognises that not all participants will have the same level of ability in relation to reading, writing and performing calculations. To participate in training, you need literacy skills to the level that would be used in the workplace. For example, in many of the units we offer you will need to be able to read and apply standard operating procedures. Some training offered by FSA requires the ability to carry out mathematical calculations. If you have difficulties reading or carrying out mathematical calculations, contact us prior to training so we may discuss your individual needs. If assistance is required, we will participate in discussions with you to determine the most appropriate action to ensure you have the opportunity to complete the course at the earliest time.
Participants are to wear normal work clothes to their course. This includes smart causal clothing and covered footwear (no thongs). If practical demonstration of competency is required, participants must wear steel capped boots, long sleeve shirt and long pants or overalls. If you are unsure of the dress code requirements, please contact us. Participants who do not comply with the required dress code may be refused admission to their course. Our trainers reserve the right to suspend from training courses participants who are dressed inappropriately for the training they are undertaking.
Courses will commence at the listed time. Due to the nature of the training participants shall be in attendance for the full duration. Participants who arrive after the scheduled start time may not be admitted. If a participant is running late they are requested to contact us to notify of estimated time of arrival.
At the start of each day of training participants are required to sign a Course Attendance Sheet. In the event this is not signed participants may be classed as Not Yet Competent (NYC) or absent.
Total course fee
Each course, unit of competency or accredited course offered by FSA has a specific course fee. The course fee is the maximum fee that may be charged to the participant for his/her selected training program.
It is FSA’s policy that the course fee will be all inclusive. Participants will not be ‘surprised’ by unexpected requirements, fees or expenses. Inclusions:
- All training
- Support and coaching
- Specified learning manual
- Classrooms and facilities
- Use of equipment
Where additional resources normally associated with a program of study are required (reference material, research documents, own computer for example) the Participant will be clearly advised of exactly what is required in advance, e.g. through confirmation letter.
Corporate client payment terms are 14 days from issuance of invoice and where relevant, Purchase Orders must be provided with the completed booking form.
Payment in full, for both corporate courses and public courses, is required prior to release of any certificates, unless agreed by FSA.
Payment required in advance
Some courses require a payment in advance. In the event that an advanced payment is required, a payment of up to but no more than $1,500 will need to be paid prior to the commencement of training to secure a Participant’s training place.
Subject to the maximum advanced payment limit (as outlined above), full payment is required prior to the participant being confirmed into any Public Course. Strictly NO course places will be reserved or held until payment is made.
FSA accepts the following payment methods:
- Credit Cards (VISA, MASTERCARD)
- Direct Electronic Funds Transfer into our bank account.
- Cash Payments
- Company Cheque
- Personal Cheque
- Bank Cheque
FSA’s Public Course cancellation policy is:
- If less than 7 business days’ notice is given, then only a 50% refund will be made.
- If less than 1 full business day (e.g. 8 business hrs) notice is given, then no refund will be made
Where a Corporate Group booking has been confirmed by FSA any changes to this booking, including cancellation or postponement will result in the following fees:
- If less than 48hrs notice of cancellation is given, then no refund will be given and 100% of the course fee is payable.
- If more than 48hrs notice of cancellation is given, and the date is re-scheduled then there is no cancellation fee and 100% refund will be made, or payment transferred to new booking date.
- If less than 14 days’ notice is given of cancellation with no re-scheduling then 100% is payable
- If more than 14 days’ notice is given of cancellation with no re-scheduling then 50% is payable.
FSA will not charge an additional fee in the event that a participant is required by a trainer to resubmit part or all of one assessment task.
Depending on the nature of the unit of competency (such as High-Risk License units) being assessed, FSA may charge an additional fee for a re-assessment of the competency unit. Speak with FSA Customer Service or Training Manager for further information.
Where the Participant requests a new copy of his / her certification the following fees apply:
- Statement of attainment $10.00+GST
- Qualification $25.00 + GST
It is the intention of the CEO of FSA that all students will receive the full training services paid for, including but not limited to: training and assessment; assessment only; recognition of prior learning or short courses.
The corporate structure, governance and financial management systems and processes guarantee the training for students enrolled with FSA. Specifically, the integrity, business experience and training expertise of the CEO ensure continuity of training and completion of training is guaranteed for all students.
The continuous improvement and quality management practices employed by FSA’s CEO and staff are designed to pro-actively identify any anomaly that might cause a business interruption or training failure, and address this situation before any students are affected. Training continuity and completion is also guaranteed by the policy and procedure system developed by FSA. For example; the recruitment, induction and staff professional development policies and procedures ensure best practice and minimise the potential for business interruption or training failure.
In the event of the course being cancelled for any unforeseeable circumstances, FSA will refund the full course fee less $150 per unit of competency completed.
In developing the assessment (including RPL) for each qualification and unit of competence, the FSA will ensure:
- Compliance with the assessment guidelines from the relevant training package, qualification and unit of competence of accredited course
- Assessment leads to a qualification or statement of attainment under the Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF)
- Assessment complies with the principles of competency-based assessment and informs the participant of the purpose and context of the assessment
- The rules of evidence guide the collection of evidence to support the principles of validity and reliability
- The application of knowledge and skills is relevant to the standard expected in the workplace, including skills for managing work tasks, contingencies and the job environment
- Timely and appropriate feedback is given to participants
- Assessment complies with the RTO’s access and equity policy
- All participants have access to re-assessment on appeal
Quality Training and Assessment Principles
Throughout the policies and procedures of FSA, the Principles of Assessment and the Rules of Evidence will be applied to support quality training and assessment practices.
Principles of Assessment and Rules or Evidence
To ensure quality outcomes, assessment should be:
Each assessment task completed and submitted must be 100% of the participant’s own work. No work submitted can be copied or plagiarised unless the part(s) used from another published source is appropriately referenced in the work submitted. Talk to your trainer if you need assistance in referencing the use of another’s published work.
Fairness in assessment requires consideration of the individual participant’s needs and characteristics, and any reasonable adjustments that need to be applied to take account of them. It requires clear communication between the assessor and the participant to ensure that the participant is fully informed about, understands and is able to participate in the assessment process, and agrees that the process is appropriate. It also includes an opportunity for the person being assessed to challenge the result of the assessment and to be re-assessed if necessary.
To be flexible, assessment should reflect the participant’s needs; provide for recognition of competencies no matter how, where or when they have been acquired; draw on a range of methods appropriate to the context, competency and the participant; and support continuous competency development.
Assessment is valid when the process is sound and assesses what it claims to assess. Validity requires that:
- Assessment against the units of competency must cover the broad range of skills
- Knowledge which is essential to competent performance
- Assessment of knowledge and skills must be integrated with their practical application
- Judgement of competence must be based on sufficient evidence (that is, evidence gathered on a number of occasions and in a range of contexts using different assessment methods). The specific evidence requirements of each unit of competency provide advice on sufficiency.
Reliability refers to the degree to which evidence presented for assessment is consistently interpreted and results in consistent assessment outcomes. Reliability requires the assessor to have the essential competencies in assessment and relevant vocational competencies (or to assess in conjunction with someone who has the vocational competencies). It can only be achieved when assessors share a common interpretation of the assessment requirements of the unit(s) being assessed.
Sufficiency relates to the quality and quantity of evidence assessed. It requires collection of enough appropriate evidence to ensure that all aspects of competency have been satisfied and that competency can be demonstrated repeatedly. Supplementary sources of evidence may be necessary. The specific evidence requirements of each unit of competency provide advice on sufficiency.
In assessment, currency relates to the age of the evidence presented by a participant to demonstrate that they are still competent. Competency requires demonstration of current performance, so the evidence collected must be from either the present or the very recent past.
FSA expect participants to make a positive contribution and to treat others with respect and courtesy; and we will treat any inappropriate behaviour seriously. We consider the following (but are not limited to) are examples of inappropriate behaviour that will not be tolerated under any circumstances:
- taking, possessing, trafficking, or being affected by illegal substances or alcohol;
- engaging in physical violence or threats of violence, bullying or other harassment using abusive language, or possessing illegal weapons;
- acting in any way that could cause any loss, damage or harm to other participants, staff, property and equipment; and
- academic misbehavior which may be defined as cheating or the distraction of others.
Also see Policies on WORKPLACE HEALTH AND SAFETY.
Definitions of cheating and plagiarism are:
Cheating – violation of the assessment rules to gain an advantage
Plagiarism – the copying of the language, ideas or thoughts of another author, and representation of their work as participant’s original work.
Trainers will actively monitor participants for cheating and plagiarism. Participants will also be required to sign a declaration on each assessment tool indicating it is their own work and they have not plagiarised or cheated. All incidents of cheating and plagiarism are to be reported to the Trainer Managers/ RTO Manager and/ or NSCA Learning and Development Manager as applicable.
Consequences for cheating and plagiarism are the same and may result in;
a) the participant being required to re-do another equivalent assessment task or re-enrol, or
b) the participant being excluded from the course with no refund of fees.
A letter will be given to the participant explaining the situation within 14 days and will be kept on the participant’s file.
Recognition of Current Qualification
FSA will recognise all AQF qualifications and statements of attainment issued by any other RTO. If any ambiguity is detected when validating a participant’s certification, FSA will seek verification from the relevant RTO before recognising the qualification or statement of attainment.
- Participants enrolling with FSA will be made aware of the recognition of qualifications policy by RTO staff at the time of enrolment to offer the opportunity of recognition of relevant qualifications or statements of attainment prior to the commencement of training
- FSA trainers will remind participants of the policy progressively throughout the duration of their course
- When a participant presents an AQF qualification or statement of attainment to a trainer or staff member, a copy of the certificates will be taken and submitted to FSA for verification
- FSA will verify the authenticity of the qualification or statement of attainment. The verified copy of the qualification or statement of attainment is placed in the participant’s file
- Once verification of the qualification or statement of attainment has been established, FSA staff will inform the participant and offer exemption from the relevant unit(s) of competency. Staff will ensure the participant is aware of and understands what component(s) of their training and assessment are affected
- FSA staff will update the participant’s records accordingly
Recognition of Prior Learning
The recognition of prior learning (RPL) process is available and explained to all relevant participants. All participants will have access to the FSA RPL policy and is available on request.
FSA appreciates the value of workplace and industry experience and recognises that participants will acquire vocational skills and knowledge from a variety of sources other than formal training. These skills are legitimate irrespective of how they were acquired and the RPL process is designed to provide validation of such relevant skills.
Participants who believe they have already obtained current skills and knowledge that would otherwise be covered in the qualification / unit of competence for which they intend to attain, should apply for RPL at the time of enrolment. The participant’s skills and knowledge will be assessed and validated, and where appropriate, units of competency acknowledged and face-to-face training reduced.
As part of the FSA enrolment policy, trainers will advise participants of the availability of RPL policy, explain what the process involves and how it relates to the attainment of the qualification in some circumstances. Trainers will remind participants of this option progressively throughout their time in training, in order to provide multiple opportunities for participants to engage in the RPL process.
When approached by a participant seeking RPL, trainers will:
- Provide the participant with copies of an RPL application form
- Provide the participant with information about the types of evidence that can be used to support an RPL application
- Assess the participants information and notify participants of the outcome of the RPL process
Recognition of prior learning fee policy
- Certificate IV in WHS from $900 (additional fees apply for any required gap training)
- Diploma WHS from $900 (additional fees apply for any required gap training)
- WHS Statement of Attainment from $450 (additional fees apply for any required gap training)
- Credit Transfer $50 per unit
- RPL for all other applicable courses is charged at 80% of the course fee
This includes the initial application, consultation either in person or via phone with the suitably qualified assessor, the RPL assessment and (if successful) certification.
Where the participant is not able to achieve the full qualification through RPL and gap training is required, a training plan and costing structure will be mutually agreed upon. The basis of the cost structure will be pro-rata on a unit by unit basis based on the scheduled course fee.
Credit transfer refers to the transferral of academic credit obtained by participants through participation in courses or national training package qualifications with other RTOs, towards a qualification offered by FSA.
Credit transfer is granted on the basis that the credit validates the participant’s competency within the relevant qualification/ unit of competence. Credit transfer of a qualification/ unit of competence is available to all participants enrolling in any training program offered by FSA.
Credit Transfer Fee Policy
• Credit Transfer $50 per unit
Participants Training Record
Upon enrolment, participant’s details will be entered into the RTO database system. This process initiates the establishment of the participant’s individual file which is then used to record all future details pertaining to the client.
The file is retained by FSA and management of the file will be in accordance with the RTO training records policy. FSA is committed to maintaining the accuracy, integrity and currency of all participant files, as well as ensuring appropriate security of all records to uphold confidentiality and protect Participant privacy.
Participant’s work will be filed according to the course conducted, competency / unit cluster or alphabetically according to the participants’ names. Individual participant records are stored electronically. The electronic records are stored utilising AVETMISS compliant software and are protected by password access.
Assessments submitted by participants will be scanned and retained in line with Records Management requirements, with all paper copies of assessments being retained for a minimum of 6 months.
Results of assessment records
Participant assessment results will be recorded electronically within FSA’s database system. This information may be used to provide annual competency completion reports and/ or AVETMISS reports, as required.
- Sufficient information to re-issue the testamur, if required, will be retained
- Results of assessment will be retained for thirty (30) years
In the event that FSA ceases to operate, FSA’s records will be transferred to ASQA in the appropriate format and detail as specified by the department at the time of ceasing RTO operations. All other records including training records, taxation records, business and commercial records will be retained for a period of at least seven (7) years.
The RTO will ensure that any confidential information acquired by the business, individuals or committees or organisations acting on behalf of RTO is securely stored.
Access to individual participant training records will be limited to those required by the SRTOs 2015, such as:
- Trainers and assessors to access and update the records of the participants whom they are working with
- Management staff as required to ensure the smooth and efficient operation of the business
- Officers of ASQA or their representatives for activities required under the standards for registered training organisations
Or those required by law such as:
- People as are permitted by law to access these records (e.g. Subpoena, search warrants, social service benefits, evidence Act) Or
- Participants authorising releases of specific information to third parties in writing
The participants themselves, after making application in writing.
FSA issues certificates of attendance (for non-accredited courses), Statements of Attainment and Certificates.
Upon successful completion of a course or qualification the participant will receive a Statement of Attainment or a Certificate within 30 calendar days of completion of training services (this includes completion of all financial arrangements).
If you require a replacement Statement of Attainment or Certificate, please email firstname.lastname@example.org . The following fees apply:
- Statement of attainment $10.00+GST
- Qualification $25.00 + GST
Complaints and Appeals
FSA have a defined complaints and appeals process that will ensure participant’s complaints and appeals are addressed effectively and efficiently.
FSA strives to ensure that each participant is satisfied with their learning experience and outcome. In the unlikely event that this is not the case, all participants have access to rigorous, fair and timely complaint and appeal processes which are outlined in this section of the policy and procedures document.
Any complaints or appeals will be reviewed as part of the continuous improvement process and where corrective action has been highlighted, it will be implemented as a priority.
A complaints procedure is available to all persons wishing to make a complaint, appeal or any other manner of objection in relation to the conduct of FSA. The complaints policy and procedure will address both formal and informal complaints.
Complaints from participants must be in writing and emailed to email@example.com or mailed to ‘Quality Manager’, FSA Pty Ltd, 6-7 Hartnett Close, Mulgrave VIC 3170. The complaint should specifically address the area that the participant is unhappy with. FSA acknowledge receipt of the complaint within 5 working days and respond in writing to the participant within 14 days of receiving the written complaint.
FSA management maintains a Complaints and Appeals Register to document the course of action and resolution of all formal complaints. All complaints substantiated by the complaints procedure will be reviewed as part of the FSA continuous improvement procedure, overseen by the RTO Manager.
It is the responsibility of FSA management to ensure adherence to the complaint procedure and that resolution is sought in all reasonable circumstances. This includes informing and assisting participants with the complaints procedure and supply of complaint forms.
The FSA appeals process is concerned with a participant’s right to request change to decisions or processes of an official nature, usually in relation to academic or procedural matters.
In the case of a participant’s appeal against specific assessment decisions, the participant should first discuss the decision(s) with the relevant trainer or assessor and request re-evaluation. The trainer or assessor will hear the participant’s appeal, make fair judgement to the best of their ability as to whether change(s) are required and then discuss their final decision with the participant.
If the participant is still dissatisfied with the trainer or assessor’s decision, they have the right to take the appeal to the RTO Manager. The formal notice of appeal is required to comply with the following principles upon submission to RTO Manager:
- The notice of appeal should be in writing, addressed to FSA for referral to RTO Manager and submitted within seven (7) days of notification of the outcome of the trainer or assessor’s reevaluation process
- The notice of appeal must be submitted within the specified time frame otherwise the original result will stand
- FSA will acknowledge receipt of the appeal within 5 working days
- If a participant’s appeal needs to be deferred due to emergency circumstances, such as in the case of serious illness or injury, a medical certificate supporting the case must be forwarded to RTO Manager. The notice of deferral must be submitted within three (3) working days of the conclusion date displayed on the medical certificate.
- It is the responsibility of FSA management to ensure adherence to the appeal procedure and that resolution is sought in all reasonable circumstances. This includes informing and assisting participants with the appeal procedure and supply of appeal forms.
- All appeals will be reviewed at the monthly management meeting and, if appropriate, result in a continuous improvements process.
Workplace Health and Safety
The Workplace Health and Safety Act 2011 outline the requirements of an RTO in establishing and maintaining workplace health and safety standards. The requirements of an RTO as specified in the above-mentioned Act are to:
- Secure the health, safety and welfare of employees and other persons at work
- Eliminate, at the source, risks to health, safety or welfare of employees and other persons at work
- Ensure that the health and safety of members of the public is not placed at risk by the conduct or undertakings by employers and self-employed persons
- Provide for the involvement of employees, employers, and organisations representing those persons, in the formulation and implementation of health, safety and welfare standards
In order to meet these requirements, FSA has initiated procedures, policies, guidelines and work instructions, practicing an on-going commitment to workplace health and safety.
The purpose of this section is to present a strategic overview of the FSA safety system and to provide guidance for meeting the requirements of Work Health and Safety Act on the FSA premises, ensuring a high standard of workplace health and safety at all times. It is obligation under legislation that all FSA employees and management contribute to and assist in maintaining workplace health and safety and risk management operations as part of their role within the RTO.
FSA management is responsible for providing the following standards as part of the RTO’s commitment to employees and clients:
- A safe workplace, with a safe system of work
- Adequate workplace health and safety professional development for FSA participants, employees, management and stakeholders
- Properly maintained facilities and equipment
- A clean, tidy, suitably designed workplace with the safe storage of goods such as chemicals (if relevant)
The following procedures and standards must be observed to achieve a safe working and learning environment:
- Maintain a safe, clean and efficient working environment;
- Evacuation plan (fire, bomb, major incident);
- Emergency control;
- Accident / Incident reporting;
- Risk identification reporting;
- PPE / chemicals (storage);
- Manual handling techniques and training;
- Store and dispose of waste according to OH&S regulations;
- Equipment checks and maintenance;
- Equipment safe storage;
- Fire hazards identified and fire prevention;
- Participant safety;
- Unsafe situations identified and reported;
- First aid and safety procedures displayed, for all RTO staff and participants to see.
Drugs and Alcohol in the Workplace / Training Environment
FSA is committed to ensuring the health, safety and welfare of all employees, visitors and participants by providing a safe working environment. Participants who are adversely affected by drugs and alcohol are deemed not fit for work. They pose a hazard to themselves, other participants, trainers and employees. In line with this any participant who is adversely affected by either alcohol or drugs in the opinion of the trainer will be turned away from training.
Participants are to comply with their employer stated Fitness for Work policy whilst attending any training course. In the event a participant is turned away from training because of “Fitness for Work” concerns the participant’s employer will be contacted.
FSA shall not be held responsible for any cost incurred by an individual, employer or organisation as a result of not being able to complete any training due to “Fitness for Work” issues.
During the conduct of some training courses participants will be issued or be given access to safety equipment. This equipment is to be used in accordance with the instructions given by the trainer. In the event a piece of equipment is not used appropriately, this may result in equipment becoming unserviceable and more importantly become unsafe for the participant or next user.
All equipment will be inspected prior to, during and after use. On most occasions, this may be factored into the training. In the event a piece of equipment is found to be faulty or damaged the item shall be removed from service and the trainer is to be informed immediately. If a piece of equipment is purposely damaged or treated in a manner not in accordance with the instructions given by the trainer, a fee may be charged.
Harrassment and Discrimination
Under Australian law it is a requirement of every workplace to ensure it provides an environment free from all forms of harassment and discrimination, including victimisation and bullying. In doing so, all staff and participants are treated fairly and have the opportunity to feel safe, valued and respected.
By definition, harassment includes any form of behaviour that is unwanted, unwelcome or unreciprocated by relevant persons. This may manifest as verbal or physical harassment, but includes any acts that may be perceived as humiliating, offensive, intimidating, threatening, discriminatory or otherwise contributing to an unpleasant workplace or experience for the persons. These may include:
- Racial Harassment
- Sexual Harassment
- Bullying / Victimisation
In the event that a person considers that he or she has been or is being harassed, this person should be encouraged to inform the other party that their behaviour is objectionable and should not be continued, provided they are comfortable with confronting the offender. In instances where the person is not comfortable discussing matters with the offending party, a trainer or other FSA staff member should be informed of the situation. In this case it becomes the responsibility of the relevant staff to follow FSA policy and procedures to rectify the situation.
All participants and staff working with FSA have the right to discuss matters of harassment with the relevant members of staff without making a formal complaint; all discussions are dealt with in confidentiality. The right to lodge a formal complaint of misconduct against the offending party is available and will be actioned according to FSA policy and procedures.
FSA ensures that all staff are adequately trained in dealing with harassment and discrimination in order to fulfil their roles and responsibilities in creating and contributing to a harassment and discrimination free workplace.
In addition to relevant training, FSA management provides opportunities for communication and mentoring amongst staff to ensure that all employees understand and correctly apply the processes and procedures involved in identifying and addressing of all forms of harassment and discrimination.
- It is the right of all staff and participants to work and study in an environment free of any form of harassment and discrimination
- All reports of harassment and discrimination will be treated seriously, in an unbiased, respectful and sensitive manner. Any form of harassment and discrimination is considered unacceptable behaviour and will not be tolerated by FSA
- When FSA management is informed of any event involving harassment or discrimination, it is their responsibility to take immediate and appropriate action to address it
- In dealing with all complaints, the rights of all individuals involved should be respected and confidentiality should be maintained
- All complaints presented to FSA should be resolved by a process of discussion, cooperation and conciliation wherever possible. The aim is to achieve an acceptable outcome for the involved parties while minimising any potential damage to the organisation
- Both the person making the complaint and the person against whom the complaint has been made will receive information, support and assistance in resolving the issue from FSA management
- Victimisation is unacceptable and will not be tolerated. No person making a complaint or assisting in the investigation of a complaint should be victimised
- Harassment or discrimination should not be confused with legitimate comment and advice (including constructive feedback) given appropriately by management or trainers. Managers and trainers should be conscious of how they present their feedback to ensure the message is not misinterpreted
- Staff and participants should not make any frivolous or malicious complaints. All staff and participants are expected to participate in the complaint resolution process in confidence that the procedures are designed to ensure fair resolution.
FSA considers participant privacy to be of utmost importance and will practice a high standard of care and concern in regard to maintaining participant privacy in all aspects of business operations. FSA will comply with all legislative requirements including the Privacy Act 1988 (Commonwealth) and National Privacy Principles (2001). www.privacy.gov.au
In some circumstances, FSA may be required by law or in adherence with the SRTOs 2015 to make participant details available to other parties such as AVETMISS. In all other circumstances, FSA will ensure that written permission is obtained from the participant before releasing any details.
FSA will only collect necessary information pertaining to one or more specific operations. The participant will be informed as to the purpose for which details are being collected.
Use and disclosure
FSA will ensure participant personal information is not used or disclosed for secondary purposes without obtaining explicit consent from the participant, unless a prescribed exception applies.
FSA will take all reasonable measures to ensure that all participant personal information that is collected, used or disclosed is accurate, current and complete.
FSA will take all reasonable measures to ensure all collected participant personal information is protected from misuse, loss or damage, and that all data and record storage is secure from unauthorised access, modification or disclosure.
FSA will maintain documentation with details on how participant personal information is collected, managed and used. When a participant makes an enquiry in relation to information collected, FSA will explain what information is held, for what purpose it is held, and what procedures outline the collection and use of information.
Access and correction
FSA will allow participants access to personal information held in all circumstances unless prescribed exceptions apply. If the participant identifies errors within the information, FSA will correct and update the file.
FSA will not assign participant unique identifiers except when it is necessary for efficiency of operations. Commonwealth Government identifiers, such as Medicare numbers or Tax File Numbers, will only be used for the purposes of which they were issued.
FSA will request specific consent from a participant in circumstances where it is necessary to collect sensitive information. Sensitive information may include, but is not limited to; information relating to a participant’s health, criminal record, racial or ethnic background.
Introduction of the USI
A Unique Student Identifier (USI) is a reference number made up of numbers and letters that gives students access to their USI account they need to create at www.USI.gov.au. A USI will allow an individual’s USI account to be linked to the National Vocational Education and Training (VET) Data Collection allowing an individual to see all of their training results from all providers including all completed training units and qualifications, from 2016.
Like all other RTOs, FSA can no longer issue a certificate to a successful student unless they make their USI available (some exemptions apply). As mentioned above, the USI requires the same confidentiality treatment as all student information, currently kept in the Student Database. If a student does not yet have a USI, they are encouraged to access the above web site to create one and pass on to FSA. Alternatively FSA staff can create the USI for the student, but this is seen as a last resort. Due to more sensitive personal details required, as well as identification documentation, the student is encouraged to apply for their USI independantly. For further information participants are recommended to read details at the USI website prior to application (www.USI.gov.au) .
Access and Equity
FSA access and equity policies are in place to ensure that training opportunities are offered to all people on an equal and fair basis in all circumstances, irrespective of their gender, culture, linguistic background, race, socio-economic background, disability, age, marital status, pregnancy, sexual orientation or carer’s responsibilities.
Practicing these policies will guarantee that any participant who meets FSA entry requirements will be accepted into any training programs. If any participant or staff member has issues or questions regarding access and equity, or believes they have been treated unfairly, they will be directed to FSA’s management for consultation.
Participant Support, Welfare and Guidance
FSA will assist all participants in their efforts to complete training programs by all methods available, practical and reasonable. Trainers are responsible for ensuring that all participants are aware they can contact their trainer or other FSA staff members in the event that they are experiencing difficulties with any aspect of their studies. Staff will ensure participants have access to the full resources of FSA to assist them in achieving the required level of competency in all nationally recognised qualifications.
In the event that a participant is experiencing personal difficulties, training staff will encourage the participant to contact FSA who will provide discreet, personalised and confidential assistance as according to the nature of the difficulties.
In the event that a participant’s needs exceed the capacity of the support services FSA can offer, they will be referred back to their employer and/or to an appropriate external agency. Extensive information regarding support agencies, resources and services may be sourced online. FSA staff members will assist participants to source appropriate support.
Flexible Delivery and Assessment
FSA recognises that some people are better suited to learning via teaching methods not usually obtained in the traditional classroom setting. With some minor adjustments to teaching and assessment methods, a participant who is experiencing difficulty learning and achieving the desired results in the traditional setting may show considerable improvements.
The staff and management of FSA respect these differences among participants and will endeavour to make any necessary adjustments to their methods in order to meet the needs of a variety of participants. For example, the inability to complete a written assessment will not be interpreted as a sign of incompetence, provided the participant can verbally demonstrate competency.
Acceptable adjustments to teaching and assessment methods may include but are not limited to; having a trainer read assessment materials to participants, having a participant’s spoken responses to assessment questions recorded or allowing a participant to sit for an assessment alone in a different room. In accordance with the AQF, FSA is not permitted to change the contents of an assessment where the changes depart from the requirements of a unit(s) of competency from a national training package.
FSA staff will pursue any reasonable means within their ability to assist participants in achieving the required competency standards. In the event that a participant’s needs exceed the capacity of the support services FSA can offer, they will be referred to an appropriate external agency.
FSA make every effort to practice co-operation and mutual respect in all internal and external dealings to uphold high quality, professional training and assessment services. The same disciplined behaviour is expected of participants as a contribution to a functional learning environment, and as a sign of respect to staff and fellow participants. Any trainer or staff member who is dissatisfied with the behaviour or performance of a participant has the authority to:
- Warn the participant that their behaviour is unsuitable, or
- Ask a participant to leave the class, without refund or acceptance into another course, or
- Immediately cancel the class.
If a participant wishes to object or lodge an appeal against the disciplinary action taken, they have the right and opportunity to follow the FSA complaint procedure.
FSA staff are expected to maintain a professional and ethical working relationship with all other staff members, management and participants.
Breaches of the disciplinary standards will result in discussion between the relevant trainer and FSA, and appropriate action will be taken.
In summary, FSA will provide:
- Training programs and services that promote inclusion and are free from discrimination
- Support services, training, assessment and training materials to meet the needs of a variety of individual participants
- Consideration of each individual’s needs to provide the best opportunity for skill development and attainment of qualifications that can lead to further training or employment
- Opportunity for consultation between staff and participants, so that all aspects of individual circumstances can be taken into consideration when planning training programs
- Consideration of the views of participants’ community, government agencies and organisations, and industry when planning training programs
- Access to information and course materials in a readily available, easily understood format
- Information to assist participants in planning their pathway from school or the community to vocational education and training.