Free apprenticeships for under 25s offers fully subsidised training for 139 priority apprenticeship and traineeship qualifications in areas such as electrical, plumbing and engineering as well as early childhood, aged and disability care.

The Free apprenticeships for under 25s program will cover the cost of training for Queensland apprentices or trainees who commenced or are undertaking 1 of the 139 high priority apprenticeship or traineeship qualifications from 1 January 2021 to 30 September 2022.

View the full list of priority qualifications.

For further information, contact the department on 1800 210 210.

Frequently asked questions

The initiative is an extension of the successful Free apprenticeships for under 21s and the Free tafe for Year 12 graduates' initiatives with a focus on apprenticeships and traineeships.

From 1 January 2021, young people up to 25 years of age will be able to undertake one of 139 fee-free apprenticeships and/or traineeships.

Fee-free training will also be available to young people who commenced in a high priority apprenticeship or traineeship in previous years, where they are under 25 years of age on 1 January 2021 and are still in training.

Free apprenticeships will be available to all young people under 25 years that commence in a high priority apprenticeship or traineeship from 1 January 2021.

Free apprenticeships will also be available to all apprentices and trainees under 25 years that are still in training in these high priority qualifications when the initiative commences, with fee-free training available for all units or modules commenced on or after 1 January 2021.

Apprentices and trainees already eligible for fee-free training under the Free apprenticeships for under 21s initiative will continue to be eligible.

The government will contribute the training fees for all eligible young people until they complete their apprenticeship or traineeship, including those that complete after the age of 25 years.

Additional fee payments will be made to Skills Assure suppliers (SAS) on behalf of eligible apprentices and trainees that are under 25 years and in training from 1 January 2021 or commence after that date until 30 September 2022.

This investment is in addition to the subsidies paid to SAS for the majority of the training costs, and the current funding for Free tafe for Year 12 graduates.

Fully subsidised training fees will be available to those young people under 25 years who commence in a high priority apprenticeship or traineeship during the period of 1 January 2021 to 30 September 2022.

There are 139 apprenticeships and traineeships on offer from our high priority skills list including:

  • electrical
  • plumbing
  • construction
  • engineering.

View the full list of priority qualifications.

Under current award provisions, employers are generally required to fund the training costs of their apprentices.

From 1 January 2021 any business taking on a young apprentice or trainee in any of the 139 qualifications will not have to pay any student contribution fees.

The government will pay these fees to the apprentice or trainee's supervising registered training organisation (who must hold Skills Assure supplier status) on their behalf.

Depending on the apprenticeship and duration, a business can save up to $3,000 over the life of the apprenticeship.

The Free apprenticeships initiative will:

  • create more employment pathways for young people
  • remove financial barriers to participation in high priority vocations
  • encourage more employers to put on young apprentices and trainees
  • expand access to fee-free pathways for young people up to 25 years old
  • reduce the number of disengaged young people
  • help achieve the Queensland Government's youth engagement target
  • provide additional support for young people and their employer.

A review of outcomes will be undertaken and their findings will be considered as an ongoing part of the VET investment budget.

Free apprenticeships for under 25s will cover the cost of training for apprentices and trainees who are undertaking a priority apprenticeship or traineeship qualification from 1 January 2021 to 30 September 2022.

Free apprenticeships will be available to all apprentices and trainees under 25 years that are still in training in high priority qualifications when the initiative commences, with fee-free training available for all units or modules commenced on or after 1 January 2021.

This program will extend the eligibility of the Free apprenticeships for under 21s initiative to those aged under 25 years in the same 139 priority qualifications.

All apprentices and trainees already eligible for fee-free training under the Free apprenticeships for under 21s initiative continue to be eligible under the Free apprentices for under 25s initiative.

The Free apprenticeships for under 25s initiative will be available to all apprentices and trainees under the age of 25 years in 139 high priority apprenticeships and traineeships.

Yes, the Free apprentices for under 25s initiative is available to provide access to fee-free training for all eligible young people under 25 years.

If a young person under 25 years is eligible to be employed as an apprentice or trainee in a high priority qualification, they will automatically be eligible to receive their training fee-free.

For apprentices and trainees under 25 years that are still in training in high priority qualifications when the initiative commences, fee-free training will only be available for all units or modules commenced on or after 1 January 2021.

For eligible apprentices and trainees, the government will pay student contribution fees direct to their supervising registered training organisation on their behalf, so students and employers should not be required to do anything to access fee-free training.

For eligible apprentices and trainees that commenced prior to 1 January 2021 and are still under 25 years at this date, the government will pay student contribution fees for any units or modules started after this date. Their supervising registered training organisation will reimburse them for any fees paid for this training since 1 January 2021.

For apprentices and trainees under 25 years that are still in training in high priority qualifications when the initiative commences, fee-free training will only be available for all units or modules commenced on or after 1 January 2021.

No, a young person will only be eligible to access fee-free training under the Free apprentices for under 25s initiative if they recommence when they are still under 25 years, and if it is before 30 September 2022.

Last updated 1 January 2021

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