Skip to main content
Menu Menu

TAFE at school (VETDSS)

About TAFE at school

VETDSS (Vocational Education and Training Delivered to Secondary Students) is also known as TAFE at School.

SM TAFE offers courses across many industries to Years 10, 11 and 12 secondary students across 12 campus locations.

Choosing a VET pathway helps make school more interesting and relevant to you, while kick-starting your career with recognised qualifications. Graduate with your Western Australian Certificate of Education (WACE), with the choice to continue in TAFE studies or move into a higher education course.

Speak with your school's Vocational Education Training (VET) coordinator if you would like to study with SM TAFE while still at secondary school.

Scroll to learn more.

Applications for the 2024 intake were open 3 July to 4 September 2023, and are currently closed.

Choosing your career

VETDSS pathways are the perfect introduction to the world of work. Learn practical skills in years 10, 11 and 12 while gaining an insight into the needs of the workplace. Attend one of our VETDSS classes one to two days a week. For the rest of the week, participate in your normal school program where you will still benefit from the educational and social support provided by your school.

Success in the program can lead to immediate employability by graduating with a nationally accredited qualification, or gain a head start in other nationally recognised qualifications. As you continue your study pathway to higher-level qualifications, your opportunities for further study increase, leading you to be able to specialise in an industry or continue to higher education and university studies.

Browse pathways by industry

Select your course and apply

Vocational Education Training Delivered to Secondary Students (VETDSS) offers various courses for secondary students, specifically chosen to provide clear career pathways after secondary school.

The VETDSS 2024 Pathway Opportunities (11 MB) (PDF document) (11 MB) (PDF document) provides an overview of the courses offered.


Select your course from the guide, VETDSS 2024 Pathway Opportunities (11 MB) (PDF document), noting:

  • Current Year 9 students (for studying in Year 10) are ONLY eligible to apply for a Certificate II level course from the guide.
  • Current Year 10 and Year 11 students (for studying in Year 11 and/or 12) can apply for any of the Certificate II, Certificate III or Certificate IV level courses from the guide.

If you need further information, please contact your school's VET coordinator.

It is now more important than ever to ensure your application is competitive. Please click on the link to view some recommendations.

Suggestion for boosting the competitiveness of your VETDSS application(opens in a new tab)

Once you have chosen your course/s, please click on the 2024 Course Application Instructions (788 KB) (PDF document - opens in a new tab)  (788 KB) (PDF document - opens in a new tab)  button for how to apply.

2024 Course Application Instructions (788 KB) (PDF document - opens in a new tab)  (788 KB) (PDF document - opens in a new tab)

Speak with your school's Vocational Education Training (VET) coordinator for further assistance or support in completing your application.

Education Support Courses (Partial Completion)

We're committed to providing inclusive learning environments for students of all abilities.

We have courses suitable for education support students. However, if you need classroom support at school, your school is expected to send an education assistant with you. If you’re unsure about your suitability for a course, please discuss this with your school VET Coordinator and your parent or guardian.

Applications for 2024 Education Support programs were open 5 September to 3 November 2023, and are currently closed.

For further information read VETDSS 2024 Education Support Courses (Partial Completion) (1 MB) (PDF document) (1 MB) (PDF document).

Important information about your enrolment

Please take the time to browse through some important information about your VETDSS journey, from attendance, to life after VETDSS and high school. Information is intended as a guide. You should speak to your school's VET coordinator for more information.


Some courses may involve work practice/experience and/or excursions to support the learning program. Refer to the course guide for further information on work placement/experience hours and excursion details for each course.

Documents relevant to excursions can be found on the School Excursions Page. Remember to bookmark this page!

Secondary school students undertaking VETDSS courses are exempt from tuition, resource and enrolment fees. However, your chosen course may require you to purchase a uniform, protective equipment, textbooks or trade equipment/tools. These items are industry relevant and for you to keep and use after you have graduated. Your course information in the course guide details the equipment and uniform items required for your first day. 

You are responsible for ensuring you attend all scheduled classes. Attendance is recorded, and any absences are reported to your school. Your VET coordinator will be contacted to discuss the appropriateness of your continuing study if you repeatedly do not attend.

You are required to inform your lecturer in advance if you will be absent from any scheduled classes. Poor attendance may mean withdrawal from the course.

You are not required to wear your school uniform to VETDSS classes but are expected to dress appropriately. Where special or protective clothing and/or footwear is required, it must be worn without exception. This prepares you for dress for the industry, and in the cases of workshops, is a legislated Work, Health and Safety requirement.

Where special or protective clothing (e.g: footwear, safety glasses, hearing protection) is required, it must be worn without exception.

If you forget to bring your protective clothing, you will be excluded from the campus workshops/classes and your school informed.

Life beyond your VETDSS journey and high school

What happens after VETDSS and high school? Explore your options and where to get further help below.


English Language students

Your efforts in vocational training at TAFE while studying at high school will pay off once you finish or decide to leave school. Your nationally accredited VETDSS units provide an excellent starting point for many study pathways at SM TAFE and beyond!

To begin exploring where you can go after VETDSS, find your course listed on the pathways page guides and begin planning your future career!

After high school

You can consider:

  • An apprenticeship or traineeship
  • A higher-level qualification​
  • Using TAFE skills to gain employment
  • Continuing to upgrade your skills
  • Completing TAFE qualifications to gain entry to University

TAFE pre-apprenticeship programs while at school open doors to:

  • A full-time paid apprenticeship; or
  • Continuing industry studies at TAFE

Jobs and Skills Prospective Student Advisors can advise about further industry prerequisites.


Two animal studies students walking together at Bentley campus
Leaving school to enter TAFE

Do you want to continue studying after leaving high school? Or, would you like to improve your English or numeracy skills for work? There is a range of foundation courses to help bridge the gap between school and work or post-school education. 

If you have the required English and mathematics levels, you can go straight into a VET study pathway(opens in a new tab)  as soon as you are no longer enrolled in your high school. 

Follow the application process for your preferred course to enrol. You need to provide evidence to prove you received permission to leave school to pursue TAFE study.

If you are leaving before you turn 18 years of age, you need to register your parent/guardian’s contact details with us, so we can provide the necessary duty of care to you.