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					Youth Connections
 PROGRAM GUIDELINES

      SEPTEMBER
        2011




                      1
Version Control

                  Release
      Version                   Modification History
                   Date
       1.00       23/12/09   Original version of document

       2.00       14/09/11   Revised version of document




                                                            2
Table of Contents

1.       OVERVIEW                                                                                                                                                            7
     1.1 PURPOSE OF THE GUIDELINES.................................................................................................................................... 7
     1.2 NATIONAL PARTNERSHIP ON YOUTH ATTAINMENT AND TRANSITIONS ............................................................................... 7
        1.2.1 Partnership Brokers .................................................................................................................................. 8
        1.2.2 Compact with Young Australians ............................................................................................................. 9

2.       YOUTH CONNECTIONS PROGRAM                                                                                                                                         10
     2.1 PROGRAM OVERVIEW ............................................................................................................................................ 10
        2.1.1  Definition of ‘at risk’ ............................................................................................................................... 10
     2.2 PROGRAM OBJECTIVES AND OUTCOMES .................................................................................................................... 10
     2.3 EXTENSIONS OF THE YOUTH CONNECTIONS PROGRAM ................................................................................................. 11
        2.3.1  Youth Connections – Specialised Services .............................................................................................. 11
        2.3.2  Support for Teenage Parents Projects .................................................................................................... 11
        2.3.3  Youth Connections / Reducing Substance Abuse Pilot Projects .............................................................. 11

3.       SERVICE MODEL                                                                                                                                                     12
     3.1 OVERVIEW OF THE SERVICE MODEL .......................................................................................................................... 12
        3.1.1 Individual Support Services .................................................................................................................... 12
        3.1.2 Outreach and Re-engagement Activities ............................................................................................... 12
        3.1.3 Strengthening Services in the Region activities ...................................................................................... 13
     3.2 WORKING WITH FAMILIES....................................................................................................................................... 14

4.       INDIVIDUAL SUPPORT SERVICES                                                                                                                                       16
     4.1 OVERVIEW .......................................................................................................................................................... 16
     4.2 CONNECTION LEVELS ............................................................................................................................................. 16
        4.2.1    Connection Level 1 ................................................................................................................................. 16
        4.2.2    Connection Level 2a ............................................................................................................................... 17
        4.2.3    Connection Level 2b ............................................................................................................................... 17
     4.3 ASSISTANCE ACTIVITIES .......................................................................................................................................... 17
        4.3.1    Alternative Learning Facilities ................................................................................................................ 18
     4.4 REFERRALS .......................................................................................................................................................... 19
     4.5 PARTICIPANT REGISTRATION.................................................................................................................................... 19
        4.5.1    Client Registration and Consent Form .................................................................................................... 20
        4.5.2    Permission to participate in Youth Connections ..................................................................................... 20
        4.5.3    Verbal consent ....................................................................................................................................... 20
        4.5.4    Re-enrolling participants ........................................................................................................................ 21
        4.5.5    Outreach and Re-engagement Activities ............................................................................................... 21
     4.6 YOUTH FOCUSSED ACTIVITIES .................................................................................................................................. 21
        4.6.1    Permission to participate in youth-focussed activities ........................................................................... 23
     4.7 INELIGIBLE PARTICIPANTS ....................................................................................................................................... 23
     4.8 ENROLMENT ........................................................................................................................................................ 23
        4.8.1    Enrolment period.................................................................................................................................... 24
     4.9 ASSESSMENT ....................................................................................................................................................... 24
        4.9.1    Movement between Connection Levels.................................................................................................. 25
     4.10     RE-ENGAGEMENT PLAN .................................................................................................................................... 25
     4.11     PARTICIPANT CONTACTS .................................................................................................................................... 27
     4.12     SERVICE PERIOD ............................................................................................................................................... 27
     4.13     PARTICIPANT TRANSFERS ................................................................................................................................... 27
     4.14     WORKING WITH YOUNG PEOPLE OUTSIDE THE SERVICE REGION ................................................................................ 28

5.       ELIGIBILITY FOR PARTICIPATION IN YOUTH CONNECTIONS                                                                                                                29
     5.1 ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA .............................................................................................................................................. 29
        5.1.1   Definition of Year 12 or equivalent ........................................................................................................ 29


                                                                                                                                                                             3
     5.2     YOUNG PEOPLE WHO ARE INELIGIBLE ........................................................................................................................ 29
     5.3     AGE RANGE ......................................................................................................................................................... 30
     5.4     REQUESTS TO WAIVE ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS......................................................................................................... 30

6.       YOUTH CONNECTIONS PROVIDER RELATIONSHIPS                                                                                                                             31
     6.1 RELATIONSHIPS AND PARTNERSHIPS WITH EDUCATION AND TRAINING PROVIDERS .............................................................. 31
     6.2 RELATIONSHIPS AND PARTNERSHIPS WITH OTHER ORGANISATIONS.................................................................................. 31
     6.3 WORKING WITH PARTNERSHIP BROKERS TO SUPPORT YOUNG PEOPLE AT RISK .................................................................. 31
     6.4 OTHER GOVERNMENT PROGRAMS AND INITIATIVES ..................................................................................................... 32
        6.4.1  Concurrent participation in other programs .......................................................................................... 32
     6.5 YAT PROVIDER NETWORKS .................................................................................................................................... 32

7.       CENTRELINK                                                                                                                                                           34
     7.1 CENTRELINK’S ROLE............................................................................................................................................... 34
        7.1.1 Young person’s initial contact for assistance ......................................................................................... 34
        7.1.2 Referrals to Youth Connections .............................................................................................................. 34
        7.1.3 Activity Test and Participation Requirements for Youth Allowance (Other) .......................................... 34
        7.1.4 Vulnerability Indicator ............................................................................................................................ 35
     7.2 YOUTH CONNECTIONS PROVIDER’S ROLE ................................................................................................................... 36
        7.2.1 Actioning a referral from Centrelink ...................................................................................................... 36
        7.2.2 Actioning referrals for participants already registered in Youth Connections ....................................... 37
        7.2.3 Actioning self referrals and referrals by other agencies......................................................................... 37
        7.2.4 Notifying Centrelink customers of non participation or exit .................................................................. 37
        7.2.5 Notifying Centrelink of second and subsequent enrolment periods....................................................... 37
        7.2.6 Centrelink contact in YATMIS ................................................................................................................. 38

8.       ACHIEVING OUTCOMES FOR YOUNG PEOPLE                                                                                                                                  39
     8.1     OUTCOMES OVERVIEW .......................................................................................................................................... 39
     8.2     OUTCOMES FRAMEWORK....................................................................................................................................... 40
     8.3     MEASURING OUTCOMES ........................................................................................................................................ 40
     8.4     INDICATIVE OUTCOMES RANGE ................................................................................................................................ 40

9.       SERVICE REGIONS AND SITES                                                                                                                                            42
     9.1     OVERVIEW OF SERVICE REGIONS ............................................................................................................................. 42
     9.2     COVERAGE OF THE SERVICE REGION ......................................................................................................................... 42
     9.3     SITE ACCESS AND SUITABILITY .................................................................................................................................. 42

10.          YOUTH CONNECTIONS PERSONNEL                                                                                                                                      43
     10.1        STAFFING REQUIREMENTS AND PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT .................................................................................. 43
     10.2        YOUTH CONNECTIONS PERSONNEL ...................................................................................................................... 43
     10.3        STAFFING AND RESOURCING CHANGES ................................................................................................................. 43
     10.4        WORKING WITH CHILDREN - STATE/TERRITORY LEGISLATION ................................................................................... 44
     10.5        NATIONAL POLICE CHECK (NPC) ........................................................................................................................ 44
     10.6        INTERIM PROCEDURES PENDING NPC FOR WORKING WITH CHILDREN CHECK.............................................................. 46
     10.7        PROCEDURE FOR HANDLING ADVERSE CRIMINAL HISTORY CHECKS .............................................................................. 47
     10.8        OFFENCES WHICH MAKE AN APPLICANT INELIGIBLE ................................................................................................. 47

11.          ROLE OF THE DEPARTMENT                                                                                                                                           48
     11.1        THE DEPARTMENT’S RESPONSIBILITIES ................................................................................................................. 48
     11.2        PROGRAM SUPPORT ......................................................................................................................................... 48

12.          REPORTING AND MONITORING OF PERFORMANCE                                                                                                                          50
     12.1        ACCOUNTABILITY ............................................................................................................................................. 50
     12.2        SERVICE PLAN ................................................................................................................................................. 50
     12.3        EVALUATIVE REPORT ........................................................................................................................................ 51


                                                                                                                                                                                4
  12.4     RECORD KEEPING ............................................................................................................................................. 51
  12.5     RECORDING DATA ON YATMIS .......................................................................................................................... 52
  12.6     PROVISION OF FINANCIAL STATEMENTS ................................................................................................................ 53
  12.7     SURVEYS AND CASE STUDIES ............................................................................................................................... 53
     12.7.1      Participant surveys ............................................................................................................................ 53
  12.8     ASSESSMENT OF PERFORMANCE.......................................................................................................................... 53
  12.9     PROGRAM MONITORING ................................................................................................................................... 54
  12.10 UNSATISFACTORY PERFORMANCE ........................................................................................................................ 55

13.       SERVICE FEES AND PAYMENTS                                                                                                                                         57
  13.1         SERVICE FEES .................................................................................................................................................. 57
  13.2         PROJECT MILESTONES ....................................................................................................................................... 57
  13.3         TAX INVOICES.................................................................................................................................................. 57
  13.4         CHANGES TO CONTACT, ADDRESS AND BANK DETAILS .............................................................................................. 58

14.       CONTRACTUAL OBLIGATIONS                                                                                                                                           59
  14.1         YOUTH CONNECTIONS SERVICES CONTRACT .......................................................................................................... 59
  14.2         EXECUTION OF SERVICES CONTRACT .................................................................................................................... 59
  14.3         CONTRACT VARIATIONS .................................................................................................................................... 59
  14.4         YOUTH CONNECTIONS PROJECT DELEGATE, PROGRAM MANAGERS AND CONTRACT MANAGERS .................................... 59
  14.5         NOTICES PERSON ............................................................................................................................................. 60

15.       INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY AND SUPPORT                                                                                                                                61
  15.1     YOUTH ATTAINMENT AND TRANSITIONS WEBSITE ................................................................................................... 61
  15.2     YOUTH CONNECTIONS WEBSITE .......................................................................................................................... 61
  15.3     ACCESS TO THE INTERNET .................................................................................................................................. 61
  15.4     COMPUTER EQUIPMENT REQUIREMENTS .............................................................................................................. 61
  15.5     INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY COSTS ..................................................................................................................... 61
  15.6     YOUTH AND TRANSITIONS MANAGEMENT INFORMATION SYSTEM (YATMIS) ............................................................. 61
  15.7     ACCESS TO YATMIS......................................................................................................................................... 62
     15.7.1      YATMIS Security Officer ..................................................................................................................... 62
  15.8     YATMIS HELP DESK SUPPORT ........................................................................................................................... 62
  15.9     UPDATING CONTACT AND ADDRESS DETAILS ON YATMIS ........................................................................................ 63

16.       OTHER ADMINISTRATIVE MATTERS                                                                                                                                      64
  16.1     REPORTING SUSPECTED MALTREATMENT OR ABUSE OF CHILDREN .............................................................................. 64
  16.2     COMPLAINT HANDLING PROCESS ......................................................................................................................... 64
     16.2.1      Complaints against Youth Connections providers ............................................................................. 64
     16.2.2      Complaints against the Department ................................................................................................. 64
  16.3     PRIVACY OF PARTICIPANT PERSONAL INFORMATION ................................................................................................ 64
  16.4     FREEDOM OF INFORMATION (FOI) REQUESTS........................................................................................................ 65
  16.5     RISK MANAGEMENT STRATEGIES ......................................................................................................................... 66
     16.5.1      Disciplinary and incident management ............................................................................................. 66
  16.6     SUBCONTRACTORS ........................................................................................................................................... 66
  16.7     CONSORTIUM ARRANGEMENTS ........................................................................................................................... 67

17.       COMMUNICATION AND MARKETING                                                                                                                                       69
  17.1     AUSTRALIAN GOVERNMENT DUE RECOGNITION...................................................................................................... 69
     17.1.1      Branding ............................................................................................................................................ 69
  17.2     STYLE GUIDE AND PROGRAM LOGOS .................................................................................................................... 69
  17.3     MEDIA PROMOTION AND ADVERTISING ................................................................................................................ 69
  17.4     CLEARANCE OF RESOURCES AND MATERIAL............................................................................................................ 70




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18.    LIST OF USEFUL ACRONYMS                                                                   71

19.    GLOSSARY                                                                                  72



Attachment A   State and Territory Specific Requirements
Attachment B   Support for Teenage Parents Projects
Attachment C   Reducing Substance Abuse (RSA) projects
Attachment D   Youth Connections Client Registration and Consent Forms
Attachment E   Centrelink Referrals for different ages

Appendix 1     Youth Connections Outcomes and Reporting Framework
Appendix 2     New South Wales – Specific Information (Part B) - NSW Schools by Service Region




                                                                                                  6
 1.   Overview

1.1   Purpose of the Guidelines
      These Guidelines (the Guidelines) relate specifically to the Youth Connections program. Youth
      Connections, which commenced in January 2010, forms part of the Australian Government’s
      contribution to the Youth Attainment and Transitions National Partnership.

      The Guidelines set out the requirements for the provision of services by organisations contracted as
      Youth Connections providers.

      The Australian Government reserves the right to amend the Guidelines, including prior to the
      execution of the Contract. In making such amendments, the Department of Education,
      Employment and Workplace Relations (the Department) may, but is not obliged to, consult with
      contracted Youth Connections providers and other contracted parties prior to the implementation
      of any change. Contracted Youth Connections providers will be advised of such changes in writing.
      Updated Guidelines will be made available on the Youth Attainment and Transitions website at
      www.youth.gov.au/transitions and in the Youth Attainment and Training Management Information
      System (YATMIS).

      The Guidelines form part of the Services Contract with Youth Connections providers. If there are
      any inconsistencies between the terms of the Contract and these Guidelines, the Contract will
      prevail.

1.2   National Partnership on Youth Attainment and Transitions
      The National Partnership on Youth Attainment and Transitions (National Partnership) was agreed
      by the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) under the Federal Financial Relations Framework
      in July 2009, and runs for four years to December 2013.

      The broad goal of the National Partnership is to improve the support provided to young Australians
      to lift educational outcomes and levels of attainment, and improve transitions to further education,
      training or employment. The National Partnership has a particular focus on 15 - 24 year olds and
      young people ‘at risk’. The National Partnership also contributes to the development of a skilled
      and work ready Indigenous workforce by increasing the educational attainment and engagement of
      young Indigenous Australians.

      The specific goals of the National Partnership are to:
           1. achieve a national Year 12 or equivalent attainment rate of 90 per cent by 2015
           2. provide an education or training entitlement to young people aged 15-24
           3. better engage young people in education and training
           4. assist young people aged 15-24 to make a successful transition from schooling into further
               education, training or employment
           5. better align Commonwealth, state and territory programs and services related to youth,
               careers and transitions.

      The National Partnership has five elements:
          1. Maximising Engagement, Attainment and Successful Transitions
          2. School Business, and Community Partnerships (School Business Community Partnership
               Brokers)
          3. Individualised, personalised support for young people at risk (Youth Connections)
          4. National Career Development
          5. The Compact with Young Australians.


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           The package of measures under the National Partnership aims to improve young people’s
           engagement with their learning by improving business and community engagement with schools;
           providing a safety net for young people at risk of making a poor transition from school to further
           education, training, or employment; facilitating state/territory reforms or projects that contribute
           to the stated goals; providing an education and training entitlement to young people; and funding
           the development and implementation of a national career development strategy.

           As part of the Australian Government’s contribution to the National Partnership, existing youth,
           career and transitions programs were consolidated into two new programs from 1 January 2010:
         School Business Community Partnership Brokers (Partnership Brokers) which creates and supports
          partnerships between and among schools and training organisations, business and industry,
          community organisations and parents and families. The aim of these partnerships is to improve
          education and transition outcomes and support all young people to achieve their full potential
          ($182.9m over four years).
         Youth Connections which provides a safety net for young people who have disconnected or are at
          risk of disconnecting from education, and offers flexible case managed support and services that
          recognises the role that family and community play in a young person’s wellbeing and development
          ($286.8m over four years).

           To achieve national coverage, 113 Youth Attainment and Transitions Service Regions (Service
           Regions) have been established. Further information about Service Regions can be found on the
           Youth Attainment and Transitions website at www.youth.gov.au/transitions

           As these arrangements have been implemented under a National Partnership, the Australian
           Government is working closely with states and territories to make sure the programs are flexible
           and responsive, avoid duplication, complement existing state and territory initiatives, and ensure
           truly national coverage. To achieve this, there are different requirements for Youth Connections
           and Partnership Brokers in each state and territory.

           As outlined in the National Partnership, funding for the programs will be transferred progressively
           to the states and territories as they meet the outcomes in the National Partnership.

           Important Note: The Youth Connections Service Model has been tailored in each state and territory.
           Details are included in each Services Contract, and at Attachment A to the Guidelines.

1.2.1      Partnership Brokers
           The Partnership Brokers program objective is to facilitate stakeholder engagement, build
           community capacity and infrastructure and support the Australian Government’s education reform
           and social inclusion agendas to improve education and transition outcomes for all young people.

           The program is focused on building partnerships to support young people to attain Year 12 or
           equivalent qualifications and reach their full educational and social potential.

           The objectives of the program will be achieved through a national network of providers that broker
           sustainable partnerships between education and training providers, business and industry, parents
           and families, and community groups to foster a strategic, whole-of-community approach that
           supports young people’s learning and development.




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           Partnership Brokers are not expected to work directly with young people, but to build partnerships
           between key stakeholders that make classroom learning more meaningful, improve education
           outcomes and assist young people to make a successful transition to further education or training
           and work. Unlike the Youth Connections program, which caters for young people of a particular
           age, the Partnership Brokers have been tasked with building partnerships to benefit all young
           people. This includes partnerships involving primary and/or secondary schools, as well as other
           education and training providers.

           The effectiveness of the partnerships brokered by the Partnership Brokers will be measured against
           outcomes under the four key stakeholder groups.

           The Partnership Brokers Monitoring, Evaluation and Reporting Framework (MERF) provides an
           overarching structure for collecting information on outcomes through the monitoring, reporting
           and evaluation of individual providers and the program. Further background information regarding
           Partnership Brokers program, including program guidelines and the MERF, is available on the Youth
           Attainment and Transitions website at www.youth.gov.au/transitions

           Refer to Section 6.3 on ‘Working with Partnership Brokers to support young people at risk’.

1.2.2      Compact with Young Australians
           In April 2009, the Australian, state and territory governments through COAG, agreed to establish a
           Compact with Young Australians to help young people – particularly early school leavers - withstand
           the impact of the global economic downturn on their career and employment prospects. Under the
           Compact with Young Australians, young people are provided with support to stay in, or return to,
           an education or training pathway.

           The Compact with Young Australians is being implemented under the National Partnership and
           includes three elements to promote skills acquisition and ensure young people are learning or
           earning:


         A National Youth Participation Requirement which requires all young people to participate in
          schooling (or an approved equivalent) to Year 10, and then participate full-time (at least 25 hours
          per week) in education, training or employment, or a combination of these activities, until age 17.
         Entitlement to an education or training place for 15 - 24 year olds which focuses on attaining Year
          12 or equivalent qualifications. Entitlement places are for government-subsidised qualifications,
          subject to admission requirements and course availability. For 20-24 year olds who already have a
          Year 12 or equivalent qualification, the entitlement is to a place that would result in them attaining
          a higher qualification than they currently hold.
         Strengthened participation requirements for young people aged under 21 who have not attained a
          Year 12 or equivalent qualification and who are in receipt of Youth Allowance (Other), or
          considered an eligible child for receipt of Family Tax Benefit Part A. Put simply, anyone under 21
          who does not have a Year 12 or equivalent qualification and who is not in education or training will
          not be eligible for Youth Allowance (Other) (with some exemptions). Their parents will also not be
          eligible to receive Family Tax Benefit Part A.


           Further background information regarding the Compact with Young Australians is available on the
           Youth Attainment and Transitions website at www.youth.gov.au/transitions




                                                                                                                9
 2.      Youth Connections Program

 2.1      Program overview
          Youth Connections provides a national, flexible, individualised and responsive service for young
          people who are most at risk of disconnecting from education or training (and therefore not
          attaining Year 12 or equivalent) and of not making a successful transition to further study, training
          or employment.

2.1.1     Definition of ‘at risk’
          For the purposes of the Youth Connections program (and in these Guidelines) a young person who
          is ‘at risk’ is defined as:
        at risk of disconnecting from education and therefore at risk of not attaining Year 12 or equivalent,
         and
        at risk of not making a successful transition through school and to further education, training or
         employment.

          Young people at risk would typically have barriers that limit their opportunities to participate in
          education, training or employment. The barriers impeding a young person’s transition are often
          complex. Factors that may affect a young person’s successful participation in education or training
          may include, but are not limited to:
        educational factors, such as poor literacy/numeracy, low academic performance, dissatisfaction
         with school, or bullying
        personal factors, such as mental health issues, medical conditions, disabilities, substance misuse,
         low self esteem, caring responsibilities, under-developed social skills, lack of self discipline, or an
         inability to conform to acceptable community standards
        social, cultural and community factors, such as low aspirations for young people, community
         violence, or lack of specialist services.

 2.2      Program objectives and outcomes
          The objective of Youth Connections is to support young people at risk to attain Year 12 or
          equivalent and to help them make a successful transition through education and onto further
          education, training or employment.

          Providers work with a spectrum of young people at risk, including those who are most at risk of
          disconnecting from school through to those who are severely disconnected from education, family
          and community. Service delivery should be flexible and seamless and reflect the young person’s
          personal situation and circumstances, aiming to build resilience and improve the personal skills and
          wellbeing of the young person.

          Youth Connections providers are required to offer youth focussed innovative activities for young
          people with the aim of finding, connecting with and re-engaging severely disconnected young
          people. In addition, Youth Connections providers have a role to strengthen services in their region
          by working with Partnership Brokers and relevant state and territory services to assist education
          providers and other organisations to build their capacity to work with young people at risk.

          Youth Connections service delivery focuses on achieving outcomes for young people. The
          outcomes for young people focus on their personal development and connection with and
          progression through education. The third program outcome focuses on the strength of Youth


                                                                                                                   10
          Connections providers’ relationships with stakeholders which benefit young people in the region.

          For more information on Youth Connections program outcomes, refer to Section 8.

 2.3      Extensions of the Youth Connections program
          Youth Connections is for young people at risk, and in some cases the program will be extended to
          provide extra support for young people who face a particular barrier, or who are in a particular
          location, which means that they are at an increased risk of having poor transitions or face
          entrenched disadvantage. In these cases the Youth Connections program objectives and outcomes
          still govern the delivery of the Youth Connections service. This extra support will also use the Youth
          Connections service model, but may have some specific requirements.

2.3.1     Youth Connections – Specialised Services
          As part of the state specific arrangements in South Australia, a provider organisation will deliver a
          Youth Connections - Specialised Services program. This program links with the South Australian
          Juvenile Justice system and offers services to young people from across the whole State who are in
          or exiting the system, or who are at imminent risk of entering the system. See the South Australia –
          Specific Information (Part B) at Attachment A for more information on the requirements for the
          Youth Connections - Specialised Services program.

2.3.2     Support for Teenage Parents Projects
          In the 2011-12 Budget, the Australian Government invested $47 million over four years in 10
          disadvantaged locations to provide teenage parents with more intensive support to help them
          finish school and support their children. Part of this strengthened support is being provided
          through Youth Connections. Attachment B provides detail of the specific requirements for these
          projects.

2.3.3      Youth Connections / Reducing Substance Abuse Pilot Projects
          DEEWR has contracted three Youth Connections providers to deliver the Youth Connections (YC) /
          Reducing Substance Abuse (RSA) Pilot Projects (YC / RSA Pilot Projects) for two years over 2011-
          2012. The pilot projects are targeted to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander youth who are at risk
          from, or engaged with, petrol sniffing or other volatile substance misuse. The Reducing Substance
          Abuse (petrol sniffing) program, which forms part of the whole of government Petrol Sniffing
          Strategy, and the Youth Connections program are working together to support the pilots. Funding
          is provided by the Reducing Substance Abuse program, while the service model, footprint and
          existing resources of the Youth Connections program will facilitate service delivery.

          The Youth Connections providers and the respective regions where they will be delivering each
          pilot project are outlined below:
        STEPS Disability Qld Inc in Youth Connections Region NT04, the Central Desert and Barkley region
         focusing on the Central Desert Northern Territory Petrol Sniffing Priority Zone
        Uniting Care Wesley Port Pirie in Youth Connections Region SA09, the Far North and Anangu
         Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara (APY) lands focusing on the APY lands in South Australia Petrol
         Sniffing Priority Zone
        Regional Training Services in Youth Connections Region WA07, the Kimberly, focusing on the East
         Kimberly West Australia Petrol Sniffing Priority Zone

          Attachment C provides specific information on the requirements of the YC / RSA Pilot Projects.




                                                                                                              11
   3.       Service Model

   3.1      Overview of the service model
            Youth Connections has three service delivery elements: Individual Support Services, Outreach and
            Re-engagement Activities and Strengthening Services in the Region activities, which are further
            described in this section of the Guidelines.

            The Service Model outlined in this section, and summarised in Diagram 1, provides an overview of
            the service elements of the Youth Connections program. The state/territory specific requirements
            on how Youth Connections services are to be delivered in each jurisdiction are at Attachment A.

            The level of effort required against each service delivery element is indicated by the percentage of
            Service Fees that must be allocated to each element, as detailed in Providers’ contracts. For more
            information on the Service Fees, refer to Section 13.

 3.1.1      Individual Support Services
            Youth Connections providers must deliver individualised case management to young people to
            assist them to overcome barriers. Provider must deliver services to:
          young people most at risk of disengaging from learning, or disconnecting from school/education
          young people severely disconnected from education, family and community.

            Service delivery will provide assistance to young people to remain engaged or re-engage with
            education and/or further training, with the eventual aim of achieving a Year 12 or equivalent
            qualification.

            Case management must be flexible and individualised.

            For more information on Individual Support Services (including Connection Levels), refer to Section
            4.

 3.1.2      Outreach and Re-engagement Activities
            Youth Connections providers must offer proactive, youth focused Outreach and Re-engagement
            Activities across the region. Outreach services are aimed at finding severely disengaged young
            people (those disconnected from school/education/training for three months or more), while re-
            engagement activities aim to connect these young people with activities to support their re-
            engagement with learning, family and community. Re-engagement activities may also provide an
            avenue for maintaining participation and engagement for participants in Individual Support
            Services. The Outreach and Re-engagement Activities must be tailored to the region where services
            are being delivered.

3.1.2.1     Outreach services
            Youth Connections providers must offer outreach services across their region with the aim of
            finding, connecting with and engaging severely disengaged young people. The provision of
            outreach services involves Youth Connections workers actively going out to locations where young
            people spend time in order to make contact with young people who would not otherwise be
            identified and referred to the program.

            The aim of outreach activities is to find young people who are severely disengaged and, over time,
            develop a relationship of trust, and encourage them to participate in re-engagement activities
            and/or Individual Support Services offered through Youth Connections - with the ultimate goal of


                                                                                                               12
          assisting them to re-engage with education and/or training. In some cases young people are so
          disengaged that participation in re-engagement activities is needed to build the relationship with
          the provider before the young person is able to engage in case management.

          Outreach services should be delivered in various locations across the service region to ensure
          appropriate coverage. Outreach services can be undertaken in conjunction with existing activities
          delivered through other services in the region, such as soup kitchens and drop-in centres.

3.1.2.2   Re-engagement activities
          Youth Connections providers must deliver proactive youth focused activities, which are designed to
          assist severely disengaged young people to address personal barriers, and develop resilience, self-
          efficacy and social skills.

          Activities could include one-off and regular activities.

          Re-engagement activities could include motivational and life skills programs and group activities
          that increase young people’s skills, confidence and ability to participate in cultural, social, education
          and economic opportunities.

          Youth Connections providers should offer a range of supportive and inclusive activities to engage
          young people at risk, whether or not they are current participants in Youth Connections.

          Youth Connections providers must deliver re-engagement activities which:
       engage severely disengaged young people (with the eventual aim of connecting them into Youth
        Connections case management)
       provide opportunities for severely disengaged young people to strengthen their connection with
        family and community through activities such as volunteering and other community events
       provide opportunities for severely disengaged young people identified through outreach services to
        access the individual support services offered by the provider
       provide the opportunity for young people to develop skills which may assist them to re-engage with
        education and/or further training.


          Another benefit of re-engagement activities it that they can provide an avenue for maintaining
          participation and engagement for participants in Individual Support Services.

          Re-engagement activities can be delivered through other organisations in the community in
          conjunction with the Youth Connections provider.

 3.1.3    Strengthening Services in the Region activities
          Youth Connections providers must work to build community capacity and strengthen services for
          young people at risk and ensure that providers of other youth services in a region are connected.

          Activities to Strengthen Services in the Region will focus on capacity building among relevant
          education providers and stakeholders within the region, to put in place whole-of-community
          mechanisms that identify and respond more effectively to provide appropriate support for young
          people to prevent disengagement. These services link very deliberately into the work of the
          Partnership Brokers and the broader community capacity building role. This requires a focus on
          joining up all the relevant, available services to provide a more effective approach that is
          responsive to the needs of young people in the region, particularly for those young people at risk.


                                                                                                                13
      Youth Connections providers will work with key stakeholders in the region, including the
      Partnership Broker, state and territory programs, schools and education providers in building the
      capacity of those working with young people at risk.

      The way the Youth Connections providers build this capacity will vary depending on the needs of
      the region and any state/territory specific requirements.

      Building the capacity of those working with young people at risk includes building the capacity of
      the youth service system and/or individual organisations.

      Awareness raising and promotional activities Youth Connections providers undertake as part of
      their standard program delivery are not considered Strengthening Services in the Region activities.
      Similarly, Youth Connections providers’ attendance or membership in stakeholder group meetings
      would not be considered ‘Strengthening Services Activities’ unless the Provider actively builds or
      enhances the capacity of the group to support young people at risk in the region.

      Similarly, re-engagement activities, including group activities undertaken in conjunction with other
      organisations in the region would not be considered Strengthening Services in the Region activities
      unless the Youth Connections provider actively builds or enhances the capacity of the other
      organisations to support young people at risk in the region.

      Youth Connections providers must work closely with the Partnership Broker in their region to build
      partnerships that will ultimately improve services to young people. Youth Connections providers
      and Partnership Brokers should work together to strengthen services by exploring new or enhanced
      partnership arrangements to meet an identified need in the region.

         For example, in a region in Western Australia, the Youth Connections provider, together with
         the Partnership Broker, organised and facilitated a series of stakeholder forums across the
         region to develop strong networks and establish a ‘Youth Strategy’ in collaboration with all
         youth stakeholders in the region.

         By bringing the stakeholders together across the region, the Youth Connections provider was
         able to develop a data base of key stakeholders, and design and produce an e-newsletter that
         was distributed widely and included the list of identified priorities for the region – which
         included regional coordination, the need for positive mentors, youth engagement and the social
         and professional needs of young people.

         As part of the strategy, the Youth Connections provider also organised a facilitator to deliver a
         series of workshops to deliver mentor training throughout the region. These workshops were
         attended by community members as well as representatives from agencies including the WA
         Police, the Department of Education, the School Volunteer Program, Workforce Development,
         Drug & Alcohol support agency, Youth Care, various Shires, the Department of Child Protection,
         Community Resource Centres, and other community groups.

3.2   Working with families
      Families should be involved in the delivery of Youth Connections services where appropriate, taking
      into consideration the wishes of the young person and their particular circumstances. There is no
      limit or prescription on how much family involvement there should be – it will depend on the
      individual circumstances and the needs and wishes of the young person.




                                                                                                           14
    Diagram 1: Youth Connections services

                 Individual Support Services                        Re-engagement and Outreach                Strengthening Services
                                                                             Activities                             Activities



                                                                                                               Work with key
  Connection               Connection          Connection         Outreach Services        Re-engagement
                                                                                                                stakeholders including
    Level 1                 Level 2a            Level 2b                                      Activities
                                                                                                                Partnership Brokers to
 For young people        For young people     For young people                                                  assist youth services and
attached to school       poorly attached to     disconnected       Proactive, youth focused Outreach and       education providers to
 /education but at       school /education       from school
                           most at risk of    /education (for 3     Re-engagement activities delivered          build their collective
risk of disengaging
                           disconnecting      or more months)       across the region.                          capacity to identify and
                                                                   Outreach services aimed at finding          support young people at
                                                                    severely disengaged young people.           risk.
 Flexible and individualised services for young people            Actively going out to locations where      Lead the development of
  at risk.                                                          young people spend time to make             a regional approach to
 Assistance to young people to remain engaged or re-               contact with young people who would         address the needs of
  engage with education and/or training.                            not otherwise be referred through the       young people at risk.
 Individualised case management to overcome                        usual mechanisms.                          Identify and disseminate
  personal barriers.                                               Re-engagement activities for severely       best practice examples.
 Provision of mentoring opportunities.                             disengaged young people to support         Establish links between
 Referral and connection with specialist services.                 their re-engagement with learning,          other services for at risk
 Advocacy and support to re-engage with family or                  family and community.                       young people in the
  community networks.                                              Activities designed to assist young         region.
 Assistance to engage with non-school-based education              people at risk address personal
  or training, such as TAFE or an RTO.                              barriers, and develop resilience, self-
                                                                    efficacy and social skills.


                                                                                                                                      15
 4.      Individual Support Services

 4.1      Overview
          Individual Support Services offered through Youth Connections are available to eligible young people
          who are the most at risk of disconnecting, or already disconnected from education and/or family and
          the community. This includes young people from all school sectors or education/training
          environments.

          Service delivery is characterised by assistance to young people to remain engaged or re-engage with
          education and/or training through the provision of individualised case management to overcome
          personal barriers. This would primarily be delivered through one-to-one assistance, with a possible
          combination of group assistance, access to external mentoring programs/services, advocacy and/or
          referrals to external support or specialist services. It may also include provision of an alternative
          learning facility - refer to Section 4.3.1 on Alternative Learning Facilities.

          Providers must ensure that young people receive the most appropriate service available, and it is
          expected that Youth Connections providers tailor assistance to the needs of each young person at
          risk. In some instances, this could involve referring the young person to another more appropriate
          program or provider. It could also include working concurrently with another provider to assist the
          young person.

          For example, a Youth Connections provider may provide case management, mental health support
          and life skills training on site to a severely disconnected young person, while they accesses an
          accredited qualification at a local training organisation, which has been organised by the Youth
          Connections provider. The Provider could also arrange for an external mentor for the young person
          through a mentoring program.

 4.2      Connection Levels
          Youth Connections providers will assess the appropriate ‘Connection Level’ of participants based on
          the young person’s level of attachment/connection to school/education at the point when they come
          into contact with the program. Participants should not be re-assessed and moved between
          ‘Connection Levels’ within the same enrolment period - refer to Section 4.9.1.

          Regardless of the Connection Level, Youth Connections providers must tailor assistance to the
          individual needs of each participant.

4.2.1     Connection Level 1
          Connection Level 1 applies to young people who are attached to/attending school/education on a
          regular basis, but who are at risk of disengaging from school/education. This includes students who
          are:
        showing signs of disengaging from education through, for example, issues with behaviour,
         educational performance, socialisation, etc., and/or
        developing patterns of poor attendance at school/education.


          Service delivery to Connection Level 1 participants is viewed as early intervention and should be
          aimed at maintaining/maximising both school attendance and engagement with learning with the
          aim of achieving a Year 12 or equivalent qualification. However, it is important to note that some
          Connection Level 1 participants will face complex and multiple barriers and may require intensive
          and sustained support.




                                                                                                                16
4.2.2     Connection Level 2a
          Connection Level 2a applies to young people whose attendance record at school/education is poor
          and they are at risk of disconnecting. This includes students with:
        high rates of absenteeism; and/or
        sporadic attendance; and/or
        frequent suspensions/exclusions; or
        non-attendance for lengthy periods (up to three months duration).


          Service delivery to Connection Level 2a participants should be aimed at assisting young people to
          remain engaged or re-engage with education and/or training, with the eventual aim of achieving a
          Year 12 or equivalent qualification.

4.2.3     Connection Level 2b
          Connection Level 2b applies to young people who have been continuously disconnected from
          school/education for longer than three months.

          Service delivery to Connection Level 2b participants should be aimed at assisting young people to re-
          engage with education and/or training.

 4.3      Assistance activities
          The assistance that Youth Connections providers deliver to participants in Individual Support Services
          must be tailored to the individual’s needs.

          Assistance activities may include, but are not limited to:
        individual and group work activities designed to assist young people develop resilience, self-efficacy
         and effective social skills
        the development of individual strategies and skills to successfully support engagement with
         education, family and the community
        connection to formal mentoring opportunities
        support to address personal barriers such as problematic drug and alcohol use, or homelessness, that
         need to be addressed before the young person can successfully engage with education or training
        assistance to overcome barriers to enable young people to successfully engage with and transition
         through education to the attainment of Year 12 or equivalent
        referral to and connection with specialist services
        advocacy and support to re-engage with education, family and/or the community
        assistance to engage with non-school-based education or training, such as TAFE or an RTO, and to
         sustain engagement in that accredited course through to completion.


          The range and intensity of services that providers deliver will depend on the needs and
          circumstances of the individual young person. For example, where service delivery to Connection
          Level 1 participants should be primarily focused on maintaining/improving the young person’s
          engagement with education and/or school, it may be more appropriate for Connection Level 2b
          participants to aim for engagement with alternative education facilities or non-school based
          education or training pathways.

          Research shows that achieving a Year 12 certificate or equivalent qualification improves outcomes
          for young people in the long term, however the Department recognises that not all young people are
                                                                                                            17
          willing to return to education once they have disengaged. While it is not a preferred outcome,
          providers can assist young people to seek and sustain employment. The Department will closely
          monitor the number of young people providers assist into employment to ensure that the program
          maintains a focus on education and does not duplicate the work of Job Services Australia providers or
          other employment programs.

 4.3.1    Alternative Learning Facilities
          Youth Connections providers must ensure that young people at risk have access to education or
          training pathways outside of the school setting. Where no appropriate Alternative Learning Facility
          (ALF) exists in the region, providers must ensure that young people are able to be connected to other
          education pathways outside of school, for example, TAFEs, RTOs, Australian Apprenticeships Access
          Program, Traineeships and Apprenticeships.

          Each provider will need to develop their own strategy for ensuring access to ALFs. This may include
          the establishment of an ALF* and will depend on the requirements of the region, the resourcing
          available, and what is already within the region. Each provider should determine what activities and
          strategies they will put in place in order to achieve agreed outcomes in their Service Region.

          Where appropriate, and in accordance with state and territory government requirements (see
          Attachment A), providers can establish an ALF. Youth Connections providers can also seek to partner
          with other service providers in the region to establish an ALF.

          If a provider establishes their own ALF, it must comply with state and territory government legislative
          requirements and be registered with the state and territory governments to deliver accredited
          education.

          Where an ALF already exists in a region, the provider must maintain strong links with this service and
          document these strategies in their annual Service Plan. To provide adequate access of services to all
          young people across the region, providers must also ensure that they complement existing services
          and/or locate their facilities so that they are accessible.

          If a Youth Connections provider establishes their own ALF, they should ensure that they avoid
          duplication with existing ALF(s) in the region by, for example, offering a different range of courses or
          a different location.

          If a Provider establishes an ALF, the Department expects that it will cover accredited and non-
          accredited training.

          * Important Note: In some states/territories there are different requirements regarding the
          establishment of ALFs – refer to Attachment A.

4.3.1.1   Alternative Learning Facility opening hours
          The Department will not prescribe the number of hours an ALF needs to be open, or the number of
          weeks per year that it must operate. This is a decision for each organisation, and will depend on a
          range of factors, including what other services are available in the region and the needs of individual
          young people in the region.

          The Youth Connections provider must ensure that young people at risk, particularly those who are
          severely disengaged, have access to alternative education or training. The Department will not
          prescribe how this will occur.

          Youth Connections services (including ALFs) must operate all year with the exception of the
          Christmas period (refer to Section 9.3).
                                                                                                                18
4.4      Referrals
         Young people may be referred to a Youth Connections provider through:
       schools
       other education and training providers
       other service providers of programs involving young people
       self–referrals
       family members or guardians
       Centrelink
       Job Services Australia providers
       other young people
       other

         Youth Connections providers will also proactively identify and connect with young people at risk
         through their Outreach and Re-engagement Activities.

         The Department does not provide a template for referrals. Youth Connections providers should
         develop their own protocols and referral forms for delivering Youth Connections.

4.5      Participant registration
         Prior to participating in Youth Connections, young people must undertake a formal registration
         process where they are provided with detailed information about the program, which includes
         information on the types of activities that will be undertaken as part of participation in the program
         and the risks associated with those activities. A Client Registration and Consent Form (at Attachment
         D) must be completed and signed by all participants in Individual Support Services as part of this
         formal registration process.

         Providers are responsible for confirming a young person meets the eligibility criteria (as outlined in
         Section 5) before registering them as a participant, and must maintain documentation (such as
         evidence of their humanitarian refugee status, waiver approvals, etc.) on file supporting their
         eligibility.

         Youth Connections providers are responsible for explaining to young people referred by Centrelink
         that if they have agreed to participate in Youth Connections to satisfy obligations relating to the
         receipt of income support, Centrelink will be notified if they are not meeting the requirements for
         participation in the program. Refer to Section 7 for additional requirements relating to Centrelink
         referred participants.

         During the registration process, Providers must also explain the Department’s complaints handling
         process (refer to Section 16.2).

         Once a young person is assessed as eligible for the program, and a Client Registration and Consent
         Form has been signed, their details must be entered onto the Youth Attainment and Transitions
         Management Information System (YATMIS) by the provider.

         The Client Registration and Consent Form must be completed and signed before any personal
         information is collected and stored, either on a file, or on YATMIS (see Section 4.5.1).


                                                                                                                  19
   4.5.1 Client Registration and Consent Form
        The Client Registration and Consent Form (at Attachment D) can be downloaded from YATMIS and
        must be printed onto the Provider’s letterhead. The date when the young person signs the Client
        Registration and Consent Form is referred to as the registration date.

        Youth Connections providers will be contractually bound to comply with the Privacy Act 1988 in
        dealing with a participant’s personal information. Under the contract they have with the
        Department, Providers are required to comply with the Information Privacy Principles (IPPs)
        contained in Section 14 of that Act as if they were an agency for the purposes of that Act. For further
        information on IPPs see Section 16.3.

        The Client Registration and Consent Form contains a ‘Privacy Notice’ in accordance with IPP 2. Youth
        Connections providers must explain to the participant that by signing the Client Registration and
        Consent Form, they consent to the use and disclosure of their personal information. All contents of
        the Privacy Notice should be clearly explained to the young person.

        Where a young person or a parent/guardian refuses to sign the Client Registration and Consent Form,
        their information must not be collected and they cannot participate in the program, except in the
        circumstances outlined in Section 4.5.3.

4.5.2   Permission to participate in Youth Connections
        Young people aged 14 and over are able to complete and sign the Client Registration and Consent
        Form for Youth Connections themselves; however, for young people aged 14 - 18, wherever possible,
        Providers should seek parents/guardians permission to participate in the program. If the Provider
        considers that a participant does not have sufficient understanding of the contents of the Client
        Registration and Consent Form to give consent, the Provider must seek the consent of their
        parent/guardian.

        For young people aged under 14 parent/guardian permission is required to participate in Youth
        Connections. The parent/guardian would need to complete and sign the Client Registration and
        Consent Form for Youth Connections on behalf of the young person.

        Where a young person self registers or a parent or guardian has given permission for the young
        person to participate in Youth Connections, they must be informed at registration what types of
        activities the program will entail. This should include information on any arrangements (such as
        transportation, supervision, etc.) or associated risks with those activities. If, at a later stage during
        delivery of Youth Connections, Providers wish to undertake activities outside of the activities stated
        on the Client Registration and Consent Form, they must seek additional consent from the young
        person or their parent / guardian (see Section 4.6.1).

4.5.3   Verbal consent
        In some circumstances a young person or parent/guardian will not object to the Privacy Notice
        included in the Client Registration and Consent Form, but will be reluctant or refuse to sign the form.
        This may be due to low literacy or a mistrust of forms and paperwork in general.

        In these instances, the provider must complete and sign a Client Registration and Consent Form
        (Verbal) (at Attachment D) which declares that they have explained the Privacy Notice and the young
        person, or the parent/guardian, has not objected to anything contained in the Privacy Notice.

        The Department expects that in the majority of cases the Client Registration and Consent Form,
        including the client’s signature will be used, and that the Client Registration and Consent Form
        (Verbal) will be used on a case-by-case basis, based on the individual circumstance of the person.

                                                                                                                20
          Where a provider intends to use the Client Registration and Consent Form (Verbal) for a whole
          community/cohort of young people, they should discuss this with their contract manager.

          If there is any objection to the Privacy Notice contained in the Client Registration and Consent
          Form then neither of the forms should be used, and the person will not be able to participate in
          the Youth Connections program.

4.5.4     Re-enrolling participants
          Depending on the level of complexity of the barriers they face and their individual needs, some
          participants in Individual Support Services may be assisted over multiple enrolment periods (as
          defined in Section 4.8.1). Multiple enrolment periods may be consecutive or non-consecutive.

          At the commencement of the second or subsequent enrolment period, the Provider must reassess
          the young person to ensure they still meet the eligibility criteria.

          At the start of each subsequent period of enrolment, the Providers should assess the appropriate
          ‘Connection Level’ which reflects the young person’s level of attachment/connection to
          school/education at that point in time.

4.5.5     Outreach and Re-engagement Activities
          Client Registration and Consent Forms are not mandatory for young people participating in Outreach
          and Re-engagement Activities, but are required if the provider collects young people’s personal
          information. Where Client Registration and Consent Forms are signed for young people in Outreach
          and Re-engagement Activities, a participant file should be created and the information added to
          YATMIS.

          If the Outreach and Re-engagement Activity does not involve the collection of personal
          information, then the Client Registration and Consent Form does not need to be completed.

          It is likely that for the majority of Outreach and Re-engagement Activities Providers would not collect
          and store personal information about young people; however we understand that there may be
          circumstances where Providers would like to collect personal information. Personal information
          might be collected where the provider wanted to follow-up with the young people and therefore
          collected personal information such as names and phone numbers. For larger events like a skate park
          competition, or a dance party, it may not be necessary or practical to collect personal information
          from young people.

          Young people in Outreach and Re-engagement Activities would only be reflected in YATMIS as a
          registration, they would not be enrolled in Individual Support Services unless they were assessed as
          eligible for these services according to the eligibility criteria.

 4.6      Youth focussed activities
          As part of the Youth Connections program, providers will deliver youth focused activities. Providers
          must take all reasonable steps to ensure the health, safety and welfare of those participating in
          activities having regard to the characteristics of the participants, including but not limited to their
          age, socio-economic and educational background, general health, language skills and other abilities.
          Such steps include, but are not limited to, the following requirements:

          1. When organising, conducting or overseeing activities for participants, providers must:
        Ensure that hazards which reasonably ought to be foreseen are identified, and preventative
         measures are taken to protect participants


                                                                                                                21
 Ensure participants are properly supervised at all times including, if necessary, after their
  participation in an activity has ceased, such as when waiting for their transport home
 Explain to participants relevant OHS, first aid, security and emergency evacuation policies
 Identify and make participants aware of any restricted areas, risks or hazards and to whom
  participants should report any incidents or accidents
 Comply with all applicable legislation when working with participants including occupational health
  and safety laws and regulations
 Complete a detailed risk assessment before undertaking an activity and give due consideration to not
  undertaking an activity at all if there are significant risks
 Ensure that personnel engaged to supervise young people, or to provide activities to them, have
  sufficient knowledge of issues and risks regarding young people, and have all necessary licences,
  qualifications, experience and expertise
 Ensure that their premises are reasonably safe
 Refer participants to qualified and competent professionals where appropriate
 Collect emergency contact details for all participants
 Record any special requirements that participants have including special care needs, dietary
  requirements, allergies or medical conditions which may affect their ability to participate in the
  activities.


   2. Providers must explain to participants what to expect during activities, including:
 clothing or equipment requirements
 starting and finishing times
 who will be their supervisor
 first day arrangements

   3. Providers should also:
 ensure participants have made suitable and safe travel arrangements
 provide participants with a Youth Connections provider contact should they have any concerns
 brief participants on their responsibilities during activities.


   4. Providers must ensure that participants engaged in activities:
 listen carefully to provider staff and follow reasonable directions
 comply with safety instructions, policies and procedures
 report all accidents to the provider
 report any concerns in relation to discrimination, harassment, bullying or any grievances to the
  provider
 notify the provider of any injuries sustained while undertaking activities.


   Providers must maintain appropriate records documenting the activities undertaken - including risk
   assessments, emergency contact details, special requirements and permissions granted for all
   participants (see Section 12.4).

                                                                                                       22
4.6.1   Permission to participate in youth-focussed activities
        Youth Connections participants and/or their parents or guardians should be informed at registration
        what types of activities the program will entail including any associated arrangements (such as
        transportation, supervision, etc) and associated risks. If providers are undertaking activities outside
        of the stated activities on their Client Registration and Consent Form they must seek additional
        approval and consent from participants and/or parents/guardians.

        For example, on registration the parent understands that the Youth Connections provider will be
        providing case management at the Provider’s offices. They will also be providing a weekly games
        afternoon and driving participants home afterwards. If the Provider at a later time wanted to take
        the participant on a camp or excursion, the Provider would need to seek additional parental
        permission.

        In instances where a young person (aged 16 or over) has self registered in Youth Connections, that
        young person can personally give permission to participate in additional youth activities that were
        not originally outlined in the Client Registration and Consent Form. However, for young people aged
        14 - 18, wherever possible, providers should seek consent from parents/guardians for them to
        participate in additional youth-focussed activities, whether or not the young person has self
        registered for the program.

        All young people under 16 require parent/guardian permission to participate in additional
        activities that were not originally outlined on the Client Registration and Consent Form.

        The Department does not provide a template form for obtaining permission to participate in
        additional activities (outside of the stated activities on their Client Registration and Consent Form).
        Youth Connections providers should develop their own protocols and forms for obtaining any
        additional permissions for young people participating in additional activities.

        Providers must maintain appropriate records documenting the additional activities undertaken
        including emergency contact details, special requirements and permissions granted for all
        participants (see Section 12.4).

 4.7    Ineligible participants
        Providers are likely to receive referrals for young people who are ineligible for Youth Connections
        (refer to the eligibility requirements at Section 5.1). Once a Provider has ascertained that a young
        person is ineligible the Provider should destroy any personal information which was collected. This
        information should not be retained under the Youth Connections program and should not be added
        to YATMIS.

 4.8    Enrolment
        Once a young person or a parent/guardian has signed their Client Registration and Consent Form (as
        outlined by Section 4.5), and is eligible for the program (refer to Section 5 on Eligibility), Providers
        should enrol the young person in Youth Connections on YATMIS.

        The only exception to this is where a Provider has made a request to the Department to waive the
        eligibility requirements for a young person. In these instances a Client Registration and Consent Form
        should be signed and Providers should enter these details on YATMIS as a Registration Only and
        should not enrol the participant until they are informed of the result of the waiver application. Refer
        to Section 5.4 for additional information regarding waivers.




                                                                                                                  23
4.8.1      Enrolment period
         The period between the participant being enrolled into Youth Connections and exiting the program is
         termed the ‘enrolment period’.

         At the end of each calendar year, Providers will have the functionality in YATMIS to rollover enrolled
         participants where those participants require ongoing support under the Youth Connections
         program. Providers should make an assessment about which participants to rollover, as for some
         young people the end of the year will be a natural point to exit. This may be the case for participants
         who have successfully sustained engagement with school/education over the final term of the year.
         However, Providers should be mindful that some young people may need sustained contact over the
         summer break to ensure they maintain their engagement with school/education into the next
         calendar year.

4.9      Assessment
         Young people enrolled in Individual Support Services must undergo an assessment by the Provider.
         The Provider will determine the appropriate ‘Connection Level’ for the young person and they will be
         assisted by the Provider to develop a Re-engagement Plan (as outlined in Section 4.10).

         The purpose of the assessment is to:
       gather information on the young person’s personal and educational circumstances
       identify aspirations and goals
       identify barriers, risk factors, social and learning needs and the extent to which these impact on the
        young person’s ability to engage with education/training
       assist the Provider to determine the extent of family involvement
       allow the Provider to determine if referrals to other specialist service providers are required
       identify a provisional timeline for re-engagement with education and/or training directed towards
        the attainment of Year 12 or equivalent, or another suitable pathway.

         Based on this information the provider must determine the appropriate Connection Level for the
         young person:
       Connection Level 1 - for young people attached to school /education but at risk of disengaging
       Connection Level 2a - for young people poorly attached to school /education and at risk of
        disconnecting
       Connection Level 2b - for young people disconnected from school /education (for 3 or more months).


         If an individual’s circumstances and needs change during service delivery and the initial assessment
         of a young person is no longer accurate, providers are able to update the original assessment.
         Providers should not remove barriers or change the Connection Level from the original assessment
         but can add barriers during the course of case management.

         Assessments are not necessary for young people registered under Outreach and Re-engagement
         activities as they do not receive case management services.

         The Department will give Providers advice on appropriately determining the Connection Level for
         young people. The Department will not be providing a standard assessment tool – this will be the
         responsibility of the Provider.



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4.9.1   Movement between Connection Levels
        Youth Connections providers should identify the appropriate Connection Level of participants based
        on the young person’s level of attachment to school/education at the point when they come into
        contact with the program.

        Once correctly assessed, participants should not be re-assessed and moved between Connection
        Levels within the same enrolment period.

        If Providers realise that they have made an error when classifying a participant into a Connection
        Level they can reassess the participant to correct the Connection Level.

        Providers should not reassess a participant into a different Connection Level if the participant has
        disconnected or re-engaged in education within the enrolment period. The participant should be
        supported using the original assessment. If a participant has disconnected or re-engaged in
        education after being exited from the program and later the young person was re-referred to the
        provider, they should be assessed again and, depending on their circumstances on assessment, may
        be classified under a different Connection Level.

 4.10 Re-engagement Plan
      A Re-engagement Plan (the Plan) to improve engagement or re-engagement in education or training
      must be developed with each participant in Individual Support Services as part of the assessment
      process. The Plan will be an individual plan that responds to the young person's personal and
      educational circumstances, barriers and risk factors. The Plan is a flexible document that must
      include options which are locally appropriate.

        The Plan will seek to address the barriers and risk factors identified in the assessment process to
        support the participant’s focus on education, or re-engage with education and should cover these
        core areas:
     level of education (areas of strength and areas of difficulty)
     learning goals (short term and long term)
     personal strengths and skills to develop and enhance
     barriers to educational engagement
     career aspirations
     personal goals
     employment aspirations.

        The Plan will outline the strategies to be put in place to acknowledge and use strengths to overcome
        learning and behavioural issues and to overcome barriers to assist the participant remain engaged or
        re-engage in education. For example, the Plan should identify:
     case management and other activities to be delivered by the Provider
     agreed frequency of contacts
     referral to specialist services if appropriate
     brokering mentoring arrangements
     suitable education courses
     non accredited education activities, such as literacy, numeracy, budgeting and life skills
     activities to develop and practise interpersonal skills

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 connection with a mentoring service
 strategies to exit the program and maintain progress.

   The Plan will set out realistic and achievable outcomes directed towards educational engagement,
   and a proposed timeline to achieve these outcomes. These outcomes can be progressive and should
   reflect the level of disengagement of the young person and the individual needs of that young
   person.

   The Plan must be developed between the participant and the Provider on a one-to-one basis and
   must be signed and dated by the participant.

   If the Provider does not have sufficient information from the participant during the initial assessment
   process to fully develop the Plan then it must be developed at the earliest opportunity. This should
   be no later than three weeks after registration, with documentation supporting this approach on the
   participant’s file.

   Participants who already have a similar plan (e.g. state-based individual learning plan,) and who
   agree to use it with the Provider, should use their existing plan. Providers should value-add to this
   existing plan, focussing on the elements relating specifically to participation in the program and
   program objectives, that is, actions that will engage or re-engage the participant with education or
   training that will lead to attainment of Year 12 or equivalent.

   The Plan must be reviewed regularly with the participant as their educational or personal
   circumstances change. If the Plan is amended following a review, the amended Plan should also be
   signed and dated by the participant.

   The Re-engagement Plan, reviews and any amended Plans should be maintained in hard copy with
   key points documented in YATMIS (refer to Section 12.4 for more detail). The participant should be
   offered a copy of their Plan.

   Providers are encouraged to discuss their proposed Re-engagement Plan template with their
   Contract Manager at the beginning of the contract period to ensure that the template contains all
   the required information. The Department understands that Providers will refine their Re-
   engagement Plans over the course of the program.

   A good Re-engagement Plan should:
 use youth friendly language
 be flexible so that the Plan can be adapted to respond to the individual needs and level of
  disengagement of each young person
 include an area for future planning or exit planning (beyond the Youth Connections program)
 have an area to capture the activities a young person is undertaking, the support the Provider is
  giving and the progress the young person is making (for example a space for goals, activities,
  duration of support, date when activities are completed or goals achieved)
 look appealing (by using pictures, and attractive colourful layout)
 focus on education over employment
 be appropriate for the needs of young people allocated different Connection Levels
 not give the impression that services cease after a defined length of time.


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      As Re-engagement Plans are not for external publication it is not necessary to comply with the Youth
      Connections branding requirements. Organisational logos are acceptable, but not essential.

4.11 Participant contacts
     Youth Connections providers must maintain regular contact with participants in Individual Support
     Services for the duration of their participation in the program.

      Contacts can be a combination of face-to-face contact, telephone discussion, video conference,
      email, text messaging, Skype or other communication methods, where face-to-face meetings are not
      possible.

      The registration and assessment process must be face-to-face.

      Frequency and number of contacts with participants must reflect a level of service that enables
      outcomes to be achieved, and should be recorded in the young person’s Re-engagement Plan.

      Providers are to maintain participant files with case notes substantiating the services provided to
      each participant, including details of referrals to specialised services and the progress and the
      outcomes of those referrals.

      Refer to Section 12.4 regarding record keeping requirements, Section 12.5 regarding reporting
      performance data on YATMIS and Section 16.3 regarding privacy requirements.

4.12 Service period
     There is no defined service period for young people in the Youth Connections program. Youth
     Connections providers will be responsible for determining the length of time a participant remains in
     Individual Support Services. This will be guided by the needs of the young person and their progress
     towards achieving the outcomes as indicated in their Re-engagement Plan.

      Once exited from the Youth Connections program, a young person can be re-enrolled for further
      assistance if necessary (refer to Section 4.5.4 on re-enrolling participants).

4.13 Participant transfers
     Participants may transfer from one Youth Connections provider to another if:
    they move to a location outside their original Service Region
    a Provider in a neighbouring region is offering accredited education activities that the first Provider is
     not offering and these education activities will benefit the participant
    the Provider in the neighbouring region is easier for the participant to access.


      Youth Connections providers should work collaboratively in the best interests of the young person
      when determining the Service Region from which a young person should receive services. Where a
      participant moves between states or territories, Providers will ensure that the young person is
      eligible to receive services in another state or territory before organising a transfer. Providers will
      need to refer to the eligibility requirements for that jurisdiction - See Attachment A. All original
      documentation on the participant’s file should be transferred to the new Provider as outlined in
      Section 12.4.

      Youth Connections providers should factor in Participant Transfers when considering how many
      young people they will need to deliver services to in order to achieve the required outcomes.



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4.14 Working with young people outside the Service Region
     In allocating Youth Connections places, Providers must give priority to servicing young people living
     in the Service Region. Eligible young people living outside the region can only be serviced if agreed
     with the Provider in the Service Region in which the young person lives.

      If an enrolled participant moves from the Service Region, the Provider could continue to work with
      the participant, however priority must be given to young people living in the contracted Service
      Region.

      Providers should also contact the Youth Connections provider in the region to which the participant
      has moved so that by working together the best outcome for the young person can be achieved. The
      Provider in the new region may have detailed knowledge of services in that region which might
      benefit the young person. The Providers should also negotiate a transfer if that represents the best
      outcome for that young person.




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5.      Eligibility for participation in Youth Connections

5.1      Eligibility criteria
         Youth Connections targets young people who are experiencing a combination of issues which
         present significant barriers to their educational attainment and successful transition.

         To be eligible to participate in Youth Connections, a young person must be:
       identified as being at risk (see Section 2.1.1); and
       an Australian citizen, a New Zealand citizen who has been residing in Australia continuously for more
        than 3 months, a permanent resident of Australia including those on a humanitarian visa (subclasses
        200-204, 866 and 851); and
       within the specified age range for their state or territory.


         Providers must determine a young person’s eligibility to participate in Youth Connections against the
         criteria above prior to enrolling them in the program.

         Youth Connections providers have capacity to waive the age range criteria for young people
         (providing they meet all other eligibility criteria) up to a threshold of 10% of their enrolled caseload
         (active and suspended) at any given point in time (see Section 5.3 and Section 5.4).

5.1.1      Definition of Year 12 or equivalent
         To participate in Youth Connections, a young person must be identified as being at risk of not
         attaining Year 12 or equivalent and at risk of not making a successful transition through school and
         from school to further education, training or employment (refer to Section 5.1.1).

         For the purposes of the Youth Connections program, an equivalent qualification to a Year 12
         Certificate (Senior Secondary Certificate) by a Board of Studies is defined as:
       an equivalent qualification such as the Certificate of General Education for Adults at Certificate II
        level or above;
       the International Baccalaureate or other higher education pre-entry courses; or
       an Australian Qualification Framework (AQF) Certificate II or higher qualification issued by a
        Registered Training Organisation or by a higher education institution.


5.2      Young people who are ineligible
         Young people are ineligible for Youth Connections if they:
       do not have significant barriers to successful participation in education or training (refer to Section
        2.1.1)
       have indicated they intend to leave school/education before completing Year 12 and are likely to
        make a successful transition
       only need minor assistance in areas such as career advice, resume writing or interview skills and do
        not have personal factors or barriers that define them as ‘at risk’
       are in full-time employment at the time of assessment
       are in part-time or casual employment at the time of assessment working more than 15 hours per
        week
       are undertaking an apprenticeship, traineeship or tertiary studies (offered through a higher
        education institution such as a university)

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       are receiving services delivered by programs providing similar assistance to the Youth Connections
        program which cannot be undertaken concurrently with Youth Connections (see Section 6.4.1).


5.3      Age range
         Youth Connections is targeted at young people aged 13-19, however, each state and territory has a
         different target age range. This is outlined in the ‘State and Territory Specific Requirements’ at
         Attachment A.

         Providers have the flexibility to offer services to young people outside the specified age range for
         their state/territory, however if more than 10% of a provider’s enrolled caseload (active and
         suspended) falls outside this age range at any point in time, they must submit a waiver application to
         the Department for each additional young person outside the specified age range they wish to enrol.

         Youth Connections providers must not offer services to people aged 26 years or older, or people
         younger than 8 years old.

5.4      Requests to waive eligibility requirements
         As outlined in Section 4.8, providers are required to assess eligibility prior to enrolling a young person
         in the program. If a provider cannot assess whether a young person meets the eligibility
         requirements, whether this is because there is no documentation, or for any other reason, they must
         seek a waiver from the Department.

         If there are other extenuating circumstances where a prospective participant does not meet the
         eligibility criteria and there is no other suitable program or assistance available, the Provider can
         request the eligibility requirements be waived by the Department.

         As outlined in Section 5.1 a young person is not eligible if they have completed a Certificate II
         qualification or above at the time of assessment. However, if the qualification is in a field that does
         not relate to the young person’s career aspirations, and is not sufficient to enable the young person
         to make a successful transition (e.g. a Certificate II in Hospitality achieved while the young person
         was in a juvenile justice facility), then the Youth Connections provider can seek a waiver from the
         Department.

         The Department will consider waiver requests holistically in conjunction with the young person’s
         personal circumstances and their barriers.

         Waivers applications must be made on the Waiver Request form (which can be downloaded from
         YATMIS) and submitted to the Provider’s Contract Manager for assessment (see Section 14.4).

         The Department may or may not approve a waiver request. If the young person does not meet the
         eligibility criteria, a waiver must be approved by the Department prior to the young person being
         enrolled in Youth Connections. If a waiver is not approved by the Department the young person
         must not be enrolled in Youth Connections.




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6.    Youth Connections Provider Relationships

6.1   Relationships and partnerships with education and training providers
      Youth Connections providers must build and maintain effective relationships with all government,
      non-government schools and non-school education and training providers (including alternative
      learning facilities) within the Service Region.

      Providers are responsible for ensuring that all education and training providers in their Service
      Region are aware of Youth Connections and understand the services that are available to them to
      assist young people remain engaged, or re-engage with education. Providers should promote the
      service to education providers so that they are aware of the strategies that the Youth Connections
      provider will use to assist young people from that school. Providers will need to form strong links
      with relevant education staff such as school counsellors and youth workers.

      Providers must not deliver any services that are part of the education provider’s normal program and
      are therefore their responsibility.

      Providers should make contact with all education providers in the Service Region at the
      commencement of the contract to establish relationships.

      Proposed school contact schedules and partnerships with schools should be outlined in the Youth
      Connections provider’s annual Service Plan – refer to Section 12.2.

6.2   Relationships and partnerships with other organisations
      Youth Connections providers must build and maintain effective relationships with other
      organisations delivering services to young people in the region, for example, organisations offering
      drug and alcohol counselling, mental health services or crisis accommodation.

      Where a Service Region has a flag for Indigenous Australians or humanitarian refugees, Providers
      must establish relationships with organisations in that region servicing these cohorts.

      Partnerships with key organisations and stakeholders should be outlined in the Provider’s annual
      Service Plan.

6.3   Working with Partnership Brokers to support young people at risk
      Each Service Region will be serviced by a Youth Connections provider and a Partnership Broker.
      Partnership Brokers will build strategic partnerships between and among four key stakeholder
      groups (education providers; business and industry; parents and families; and community groups) to
      improve education outcomes and support young people to remain engaged, or re-engage, in
      education and realise their full social and economic potential.

      The Partnership Brokers program is based on the principle that support for young people is a
      collective responsibility. Partnership Brokers will foster a whole-of-community approach by creating
      and enhancing partnerships that support the learning and development of all young people including
      those at risk. These partnerships provide opportunities for young people to be connected with, and
      contribute to, the community.

      Partnership Brokers help community groups explore partnership opportunities that harness
      community resources, build social networks and strengthen community support for young people.
      Resulting partnerships enable community groups to share their knowledge about the learning and
      development needs of young people and align their efforts to increase young people’s participation
      and engagement in education.

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        Youth Connections providers must form effective working relationships with the Partnership Brokers
        in the region. The purpose of the relationship is to capitalise on partnership brokering expertise to
        develop partnerships that support young people at risk.

           For example, the Partnership Brokers may establish, in conjunction with the Youth Connections
           provider, a partnership between local school principals and local support services to:
                 improve access to services
                 streamline referral processes
                 develop communication strategies to support at risk young people and their families
                 build a partnership of key stakeholders to create effective and appropriate mentoring
                     opportunities for young people
                 run youth focused activities for young people.


        How the Youth Connections providers will work with Partnership Brokers to establish partnerships to
        build capacity in the Service Region must be outlined in the Provider’s annual Service Plan.

        For more information on the Partnership Brokers please refer to the Youth Attainment and
        Transitions website at www.youth.gov.au/transitions

 6.4    Other government programs and initiatives
        Youth Connections is one of a range of programs that contribute to the Australian Government’s
        broad objective to support improved education and transition outcomes for young people. These
        include a range of state, territory and other Australian Government initiatives. Providers must be
        aware of and work collaboratively with other organisations, programs and initiatives.

6.4.1   Concurrent participation in other programs
        Providers must be aware of other initiatives and services available in the Service Region which
        represent an overlap or duplication of services. Youth Connections providers should work
        collaboratively with providers of other services to ensure services are complementary and are not
        duplicated.

        The Department will provide advice on the concurrency status of relevant programs through the
        Youth Connections Program Bulletins which are periodically sent to all Youth Connections providers.
        This advice will be updated as concurrency arrangements change over the life of the program.

        There are some instances where young people cannot participate concurrently in state/territory
        government funded services or programs that provide similar services (see Section 6.4.1). As some
        programs are state or regionally specific, each Youth Connections provider should liaise with their
        Contract Manager who will advise whether other state/territory government funded services or
        programs can be undertaken concurrently with Youth Connections.

 6.5    YAT Provider Networks
        The Department supports collaboration between Youth Connections providers and the sharing of
        best practice across Provider networks. Working collaboratively will enable Providers to share
        innovative strategies for engaging young people, and spread successful strategies for delivering
        services across region boundaries. To achieve this, the Department has supported the establishment
        of State and Territory Networks, and National Networks for both Youth Connections and Partnership
        Brokers providers.

        Youth Connections providers are expected to be active members of State and Territory Networks.
        The Department requires all Providers to have representation and attend meetings, either face to

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   face or via teleconference.

   Each State and Territory Network will elect a national network representative to attend national
   network meetings.

   Smaller networks may negotiate with the Department to participate in joint meetings with a larger
   State or Territory Network but retain their representation on the National Network.

   The networks will play an important role to:
 enhance the relationship between the network of Youth Connections providers and the Department
 improve the communication and collaboration between providers at state/territory and national
  level
 identify and actively promote good practice for the Youth Connections program, and assist in
  dissemination of this good practice and support professional development
 gather issues and concerns from the State/Territory Youth Connections Network for discussion at the
  national level
 provide feedback to the Department to inform ongoing program improvement, strategic program
  directions, program delivery and policy directions
 increase participation of Youth Connections providers in the networks
 identify professional development and training needs and opportunities for Youth Connections
  providers
 represent providers at a jurisdiction/national level and engage key stakeholders (e.g. state
  governments, state representative bodies, industry associations and business) to improve program
  outcomes and performance
 provide input into and feedback on conferences and forums
 identify strategies/opportunities to work in closer collaboration with Partnership Brokers and with
  other youth programs with an education and training or re-engagement focus.




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 7.      Centrelink

 7.1      Centrelink’s role
          Centrelink provides information and assistance to the public on a range of Australian Government
          services and programs.

          Youth Connections is one of the programs which young people can be referred to by Centrelink.

          In relation to Youth Connections, Centrelink will:
        provide up-to-date information about Youth Connections to potentially eligible customers
        provide details of the local provider
        refer potentially eligible customers to Youth Connections providers.


7.1.1     Young person’s initial contact for assistance
          When a young person first contacts Centrelink seeking assistance, the First Contact Service Offer
          workflow is run. This process will identify the appropriate income support payment the young
          person could apply for, as well as other services such as employment services.

          Young people, who are claiming an income support payment that has Activity Test or participation
          requirements, will be registered as fully eligible job seekers.

          The job seeker is asked a series of questions regarding their individual circumstances to determine
          their eligibility to access employment services.

          The majority of fully eligible job seekers will be eligible for this assistance delivered by Job Services
          Australia (JSA). They will then be referred to Stream Services and an initial appointment will be
          booked within two working days with a JSA provider of their choice unless they are exempt from
          doing so, for example, due to an activity test exemption.

7.1.2     Referrals to Youth Connections
          Centrelink’s role is to refer eligible customers aged between 15 and 19 years to a Youth Connections
          provider in their local area. Different age ranges apply in Tasmania, Queensland and the Australian
          Capital Territory.

          For more information and advice on Centrelink’s referrals for young people of different ages, refer to
          Attachment E.

          Centrelink will provide details of the referral to the young person. The referral will then be recorded
          online in the Centrelink IT system. The referral will be transferred on the interface and then appear
          in YATMIS.

          At the time of the referral, Centrelink does not contact the provider to make an appointment for the
          customer to participate in Youth Connections.

7.1.3     Activity Test and Participation Requirements for Youth Allowance (Other)
          If a customer is receiving Youth Allowance (Other), they will be subject to Activity Test requirements.

 7.1.3.1 Young people without Year 12 or equivalent - Early school leavers
        For young people who have not completed Year 12 or equivalent and are seeking to claim Youth
        Allowance (Other), Youth Connections is one of the approved activities that are available to them.


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        As Youth Connections is an approved activity that fully meets the Activity Test, it is not mandatory for
        the Youth Allowance (Other) customer to undertake additional job search activity whilst participating
        in Youth Connections.

 7.1.3.2 Job Services Australia/Stream Services
        Youth Allowance (Other) job seekers, 15 to 19 years of age who have been identified as eligible for
        Youth Connections as part of the First Contact Service Offer, will be automatically deferred from a
        referral to JSA for a period of six weeks.

        These Youth Allowance (Other) job seekers will only be referred to stream services with a JSA
        provider at the end of the six week deferment period if they have not commenced in Youth
        Connections.

        Youth Allowance (Other) job seekers participating in Youth Connections can volunteer for JSA Stream
        Services if they wish.

        If a job seeker (irrespective of whether they are in receipt of income support) has commenced with a
        JSA provider, they may still be identified as being suitable for Youth Connections by either the JSA
        provider or by Centrelink.

        If a referral to Youth Connections follows, then participation in Youth Connections may then be
        undertaken concurrently with Stream Services.

 7.1.3.3 Employment Pathway Plan (EPP)
        A Youth Allowance (Other) customer is required to sign an Employment Pathway Plan (EPP) with
        Centrelink.

        An EPP is updated by Centrelink if the Youth Allowance (Other) customer is:
     Centrelink managed (as in the case of Early School Leavers); and
     when Centrelink makes the referral to Youth Connections on behalf of a JSA provider.


        An EPP is updated by the JSA provider if the Youth Allowance (Other) customer is:
     JSA provider managed


7.1.4   Vulnerability Indicator
        A vulnerability indicator is a flag added to the customer record of a job seeker who may have a high
        risk of non-compliance with activity test or participation requirements.

        A vulnerability indicator is usually recorded as part of the Job Seeker Classification Instrument (JSCI)
        assessment process (following the registration workflow as per the information in Section 7.1.1) or
        following social worker involvement.

        The flag indicates to JSA Providers and Centrelink that the job seeker has personal circumstances that
        directly impact on their ability to comply with their requirements. Therefore these job seekers may
        require additional support and understanding.

        At the time of the referral to Youth Connections, Centrelink will provide a flag as part of the online
        information, to indicate if a young person is classified as vulnerable.



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 7.2      Youth Connections provider’s role
          The Youth Connections provider must endeavour to establish and maintain satisfactory relationships
          with all Centrelink offices in their Service Region.

          An effective relationship between providers and Centrelink requires regular meetings to:
        promote Youth Connections services by providing promotional material such as local brochures or
         flyers for distribution to customers
        discuss issues at the local level, such as reasons why customers do not commence in the program
        provide information on individual participants to Centrelink within the stated timeframes (see
         Sections 7.2.1 and 7.2.4 below)


7.2.1     Actioning a referral from Centrelink
          When an automated referral from Centrelink to Youth Connections appears in YATMIS, the Youth
          Connections provider should assess whether the young person is eligible for the program. If the
          young person meets the eligibility requirements, the Provider should make an appointment with the
          young person for an assessment interview.

          Once the young person has been assessed, the Youth Connections provider must action the referral
          by ‘accepting’ or ‘declining’ the referral in YATMIS. The referral result is to be entered into YATMIS
          within five working days from the assessment taking place. YATMIS will then send this referral result
          through the YATMIS interface to Centrelink.

          If the Provider accepts a referral, the Provider must enter the acceptance into YATMIS and proceed
          to create a YATMIS record for the customer or, if applicable, match the customer to an existing
          YATMIS record (see Section 7.2.2). Where the Centrelink referral is declined, the Provider must enter
          the reason for non-acceptance.

          Failure to notify Centrelink that a referred customer has been accepted or declined may impact on
          the customer’s entitlement to continue receiving income support payments. Therefore Providers
          must adhere to the five working days advice timeframe.

          If a Centrelink customer fails to attend the assessment interview, the Provider is to enter into YATMIS
          a ‘did not attend’ result. Where a Centrelink customer contacts the Provider to reschedule an
          assessment interview, the Provider will only be able to reschedule on one occasion, and the
          rescheduled appointment must be within two weeks of the original appointment date.

          Where a Centrelink customer is seeking to reschedule a second time or the rescheduled date is more
          than two weeks from the original appointment date, the Provider will need to finalise the referral in
          YATMIS with a ‘did not attend’ result.

          When a referral has been sent from Centrelink to the Provider via YATMIS, the Provider will have a
          total of 6 weeks to either accept or decline the participant’s referral. If the referral has not been
          actioned within that time frame, Centrelink may refer the participant to an alternative service.

          A Centrelink customer must be actively participating in Youth Connections to satisfy the
          requirements of their Employment Pathways Plan. Youth Connections providers should therefore
          exit the Centrelink customer from the program and finalise the Centrelink referral if the participant is
          uncooperative or unwilling to receive assistance and support that the Provider has deemed
          appropriate for the participant’s needs (see Section 7.2.4)



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7.2.2   Actioning referrals for participants already registered in Youth Connections
        Where a participant is already registered in Youth Connections and subsequently becomes a
        Centrelink customer, Providers must still action the automated referral from Centrelink by
        ‘accepting’ the referral on YATMIS. This will generate an automatic message to Centrelink indicating
        that the participant is already registered in Youth Connections.

        The Youth Connections provider should accept the referral and link it to the existing participant
        record in YATMIS.

7.2.3   Actioning self referrals and referrals by other agencies
        A young person who is participating in Youth Connections and is also a Centrelink customer must be
        advised to contact Centrelink and request a referral to Youth Connections.

        A young person (job seeker) who has been referred by a Job Services Australia provider must be
        advised to contact Centrelink and request a referral to Youth Connections.

        Many young people are unsure about how to describe their Youth Connections activity to Centrelink,
        which may result in a referral to a program other than Youth Connections. Providers are encouraged
        to provide the YATMIS ‘Enrolment Form’ to young people to pass onto Centrelink when they
        approach Centrelink for an online referral to Youth Connections. The YATMIS ‘Enrolment Form’ can
        be printed from an individual participant’s record in YATMIS under ‘Engagements’.

        If a Centrelink referral does not appear in YATMIS, the Youth Connections provider should email the
        Centrelink ‘Pathways to Work Contact’ for Youth Connections at:
        Pathways.To.Work@humanservices.gov.au

7.2.4   Notifying Centrelink customers of non participation or exit
        Youth Connections providers must notify Centrelink when a Centrelink customer is no longer
        participating in the program. For example, when a participant:
     is not engaging with the program
     moves from the Service Region
     completes the program.

        When a Centrelink customer ceases to participate in Youth Connections, the Provider must finalise
        the participant’s record on YATMIS with the appropriate cessation reason.

        To finalise an active or ‘placed’ referral the Youth Connections provider must add a ‘completion’
        engagement against the participant’s YATMIS record. This will notify Centrelink through the YATMIS
        interface that the young person has exited the program.

        Youth Connections providers must advise Centrelink via YATMIS within 5 working days when a
        Centrelink customer exits, or is not actively participating in the program.

7.2.5   Notifying Centrelink of second and subsequent enrolment periods
        If a Youth Connections participant in receipt of income support wishes to participate for a second or
        subsequent enrolment period after exiting from Youth Connections (and the Provider believes they
        would still be eligible for the program), the participant must be re-referred to Youth Connections by
        Centrelink (refer to Section 7.1.2).

        Second and subsequent referrals must be actioned in YATMIS by the Provider (see Section 7.2.1).


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7.2.6   Centrelink contact in YATMIS
        On YATMIS, for each Youth Connections contract under ‘Contacts’ there is the option to select a
        ‘Centrelink contact’. The ‘Centrelink contact’ is a staff member in Youth Connections organisation
        whose contact details will be made available to Centrelink to assist the referral process and
        engagement at the local level. This is one way that Providers can facilitate the Centrelink referral
        process.

        It is essential to have:
     all the service delivery offices listed against the contract/region
     a ‘Centrelink contact’ against each service delivery office
     updated address, phone number and email address for the ‘Centrelink contact’ in YATMIS.


        Youth Connections provider’s YATMIS Security Officer should email the YATMIS Helpdesk if details of
        the ‘Centrelink contact’ needs to be updated in YATMIS (see Section 15.7.1 on the YATMIS Security
        Officer role).




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8.      Achieving Outcomes for Young People

8.1      Outcomes overview
         The objective of Youth Connections is to support young people at risk to attain Year 12 or equivalent
         and to help them make a successful transition through education and onto further education,
         training or work. To support this, Youth Connections focuses on three program outcomes:

      i. Personal Development – Young people at risk develop personal skills and attributes that promote
         wellbeing, resilience and support positive life choices.

         Providers assist young people to:
       develop resilience and self-efficacy
       develop strategies to overcome barriers to participation and engagement
       make positive life choices
       develop their social skills
       engage or re-engage successfully with family and community
       improve their health and wellbeing.


     ii. Connection and Progression – Young people at risk engage with education, family and community
         and have successful education and transition outcomes.

         Providers assist young people to:
       sustain engagement or re-engage with education
       successfully transition through education
       prepare for participation in further education, training or employment pathways
       engage with specialist services and activities as needed
       connect and engage successfully with family and/or personal support networks
       connect and engage positively and actively with the wider community
       improve career development and life skills.


     iii. Relationships – There are strong, collaborative relationships in the region that strengthen service
         delivery outcomes for young people at risk.

         Providers build strong relationships with stakeholders to:
       harness and leverage relevant community resources
       facilitate early identification and intervention for young people at risk
       support access to education, specialist referral services and support networks
       facilitate family and community support networks
       provide opportunities for young people to participate in their community
       advocate for individual young people
       provide flexible service delivery to overcome geographical and structural barriers.


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8.2   Outcomes Framework
      The Department has developed a Youth Connections Outcomes and Reporting Framework
      (Outcomes Framework) that links the three overarching program outcomes with a menu of
      outcomes indicators that a Provider may achieve in delivering Youth Connections services. The
      Outcomes Framework is included at Appendix 1 to these Guidelines.

8.3   Measuring outcomes
      One aspect of Providers’ performance is the outcomes achieved through Individual Support Services.
      Providers are also expected to achieve outcomes against their Outreach and Re-engagement and
      Strengthening Services in the Region Activities each year. The achievement of outcomes for each of
      the elements of Youth Connections service delivery will form part of any assessment of provider
      performance.

      Under Individual Support Services, Youth Connections providers will be expected to achieve different
      outcome indicators to reflect the needs of the young person, their level of disconnection and the
      factors that are causing them to be at risk.

      The Outcomes Framework acknowledges that Youth Connections providers will not be able to
      achieve outcomes for every young person that they offer services to, and also acknowledges that
      young people at risk will have a series of barriers to overcome. Therefore, the Outcomes Framework
      is broken into progressive and final outcome indicators.

      Final outcomes are focused on sustained engagement or re-engagement with an education or
      training pathways. The Department also recognises that for a proportion of young people an
      acceptable outcome will be employment.

      Progressive outcomes represent instances where a young person has made significant progress in
      addressing their barriers to full engagement in education.

      All outcomes, whether progressive or final, will need to be significant and represent a key milestone
      for that young person.

      Each Youth Connections provider will need to make satisfactory progress towards meeting the
      agreed outcomes across all elements of Youth Connections service delivery at each quarter.

      Refer to Section 12.8 for information on assessment of performance.

8.4   Indicative outcomes range
      Providers have not been given fixed business allocations for their Service Region. For Individual
      Support Services, the Department has determined the number of young people that Youth
      Connections providers will be required to achieve outcomes for in each year of the contract period,
      the ‘indicative outcomes range’, which is included in the Providers’ Services Contract.

      The indicative outcomes range is a mix of progressive and final outcomes. Each Youth Connections
      participant who achieves at least one outcome, either progressive or final, in a calendar year will
      count towards a Provider’s indicative outcomes range for that year.

      The profile of progressive and final outcomes will change over time as individuals’ progress further
      through their case management, with more final outcomes being achieved later in the individual’s
      service period.

      Providers have the opportunity to seek changes to their indicative outcome range each year when
      they submit their annual Service Plan.
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Youth Connections providers must achieve outcomes for individual young people across the different
Connection Levels. The percentage of expected outcomes to be achieved for young people in each
Connection Level must be detailed in the provider’s annual Service Plan, and agreed by the
Department each year.

A Youth Connections provider that operates in a region with a high proportion of Indigenous young
people or humanitarian refugees will need to achieve an agreed proportion of overall outcomes (for
example, 10%) for these equity groups. Where this applies, the proportion that must be achieved will
be outlined in the Provider’s annual Service Plan, and agreed by the Department each year.

Each year the Provider submits their Service Plan and has an opportunity to seek changes to their
indicative outcome range, including the mix of progressive and final outcomes, the percentage of
outcomes to be achieved across each Connection Level and the outcomes to be achieved for flagged
cohorts - see Section 12.2 on the Service Plan.

Each Youth Connections provider will then need to make satisfactory progress towards meeting the
agreed outcomes at each quarter.

It is highly likely that a Youth Connections provider will need to offer services to a greater number of
young people than the number of young people for whom they will need to achieve outcomes. This is
due to the natural attrition rate for young people at risk from these types of services.

Youth Connections providers will be responsible for managing their own caseload to enable them to
meet outcomes for the agreed number of young people. Youth Connections providers expected
caseload will be outlined in their Service Plan each year. Providers will also be required to keep
records of the number of young people that are not able to be enrolled into Youth Connections each
quarter due to capacity (unmet demand) – see Section 12.5 on Reporting data on YATMIS.




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9.    Service Regions and Sites

9.1   Overview of Service Regions
      Youth Connections is a national program made up of 113 Youth Attainment and Transition Service
      Regions (Service Regions). Service Regions within each state/territory have been determined in
      consultation with state and territory governments. Regional constructs vary between jurisdictions to
      ensure Youth Connections complements existing programs and services, aligns with state/territory
      data collection areas and meets the specific needs of each jurisdiction.

9.2   Coverage of the Service Region
      Providers must make services available to eligible young people across an entire Service Region. This
      includes young people from government and non-government school sectors.

      To ensure coverage of the Service Region, organisations will need to make appropriate arrangements
      to deliver services, such as establishing more than one delivery site, or forming partnerships with
      other organisations.

      For example, Providers may operate one day a week in a local education provider or local
      government premises, or develop an arrangement with the Partnership Broker to share facilities.

9.3   Site access and suitability
      Providers must have at least one main site located within the Service Region where participants can
      access Youth Connections services and activities. This site must be easy for young people to access,
      be youth friendly and recognisable as a Youth Connections service delivery and contact point.

      The main site must be operational on a full-time basis throughout the whole year within standard or
      normal business hours that reflect the needs of the participants. Additional sites may operate on
      either a full-time or part-time basis according to local need.

      In subcontracting arrangements, the lead member of a partnership must have a physical presence
      within the Service Region.

      Providers must have an out-of-hours call arrangement available to participants and the general
      public. This may consist of a toll-free number that can be re-directed to an out of business hours
      answering service where participants or members of the public can call and leave a message to be
      answered the following day. The Department also recommends that the answering machine message
      lists crisis services in the region which would be suitable for young people.

      Providers must also have a toll-free number that is made known to participants, particularly those
      who live outside the local call zone, so that young people are not burdened with telephone call costs.

      The Department will advise acceptable closures over the Christmas/New Year period. Proposals by
      Providers to shut down for periods outside the notified dates will need written approval by the
      Program Manager.




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10. Youth Connections Personnel

10.1 Staffing requirements and professional development
     Providers must employ a mix of suitably qualified and/or experienced personnel to deliver Youth
     Connections services and encourage ongoing professional development for staff. The mix of
     personnel should include staff members who have qualifications and/or relevant experience in youth
     and/or social work fields, and may also include experience in teaching, psychology, mental health or
     community health. The following list outlines mandatory and highly desirable requirements for
     Youth Connections personnel.

      Mandatory
    Approval from the Department to work with children if the person has adverse findings resulting
     from their criminal history check (ie National Police Check (NPC) for working with children conducted
     by the AFP, a state police force or a CrimTrac Broker – see Section 10.7) and no unsuitable finding by
     the Department’s National Investigations Unit.
    Cultural awareness training including Indigenous cultural awareness (and humanitarian refugee
     cultural awareness, if relevant).


      Highly desirable
    In Service Regions flagged for Indigenous Australians, employment of at least one Indigenous case
     worker within 12 months of the Contract commencing unless otherwise agreed by the Program
     Manager.


      Some states/territories have additional staffing requirements, refer to the ‘State and Territory
      Specific Requirements’ at Attachment A.

      NOTE: The procedures to follow in cases where the NPC for working with children checks reveal an
      adverse result can be found at Section 10.7.

10.2 Youth Connections personnel
     Youth Connections personnel are defined as:
    employees of the organisation/subcontractor/consortium who are engaged/or to be engaged to
     deliver Youth Connections services
    personnel within the organisation who interact with participants or have access to their personal
     information (including personnel of organisations involved through a consortium or subcontracting
     arrangement)
    volunteers who support the delivery of the program.


      Providers must maintain appropriate staffing levels to successfully and effectively implement the
      Services Contract and deliver services to young people.

10.3 Staffing and resourcing changes
     Providers must notify the Department of any staffing and resourcing changes. These changes must
     be reflected in YATMIS, refer to Section 15.7.

      Providers should also undertake succession planning to ensure continuity of services in the event of
      staffing changes.



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10.4 Working with Children - State/Territory Legislation
     Providers must be familiar with state or territory legislation applicable to working with children,
     some of which may impose obligations on both Providers and staff or volunteers of Providers. In
     particular, Providers must adhere to any requirements for the protection and reporting of the
     maltreatment or sexual abuse of children under the relevant state or territory legislation which
     includes, but is not limited to:
    Commission for Children and Young People Act 1998 (NSW)
    Children and Young Persons (Care and Protection) Act 1988 (NSW)
    Child Protection Act 1999 (QLD)
    Health Act 1937 (QLD)
    Commission for Children and Young People Act 2000 (QLD)
    Child Wellbeing and Safety Act 2005 (VIC)
    Children, Youth and Families Act 2005 (VIC)
    Children’s Protection Act 1993 (SA)
    Children, Young Persons and Their Families Act 1997 (TAS)
    Care and Protection of Children Act 2007 (NT)
    Community Welfare Act 1983 (NT)
    Children and Young People Act 1999 (ACT)
    Working with Children (Criminal Record Checking) Act 2004 (WA)


      Providers must also ensure they meet all state or territory based requirements for working with
      children. This is a matter for individual Providers to determine.

10.5 National Police Check (NPC)
     The Australian Government is committed to protecting children from harm and promoting their well-
     being. The Australian Government is also committed to protecting young people eligible for Youth
     Connections and all other parties involved in the delivery of Youth Connections services.

      While the use of state/territory and National Police Checks (NPCs) is an important tool for minimising
      the likelihood of abuse or ill-treatment of children by those working with them, it does not replace
      the need to foster a workplace culture committed to child safety.

      All Youth Connections personnel are required to undergo a NPC undertaken by the Australian Federal
      Police (AFP), by a state or territory police force, or through a Crimtrac accredited agency or broker
      listed in the following document at:
      http://www.crimtrac.gov.au/documents/AccreditedAgenciesListforCrimTracwebsite.pdf

      The check undertaken must be specifically in relation to working with children.

      The requirement to obtain NPC for working with children extends to all personnel delivering Youth
      Connections under consortium or subcontracting arrangements who will have contact with children
      (as defined in Schedule 3 of the Youth Connections Contract). Providers must obtain the NPC in
      addition to meeting the requirements of any state or territory legislation, regulations or guidelines
      for persons who work with children (refer to Section 10.5).

      The Providers must advise potential Youth Connections personnel that the NPC will be used to assess

                                                                                                           44
   their suitability to work with children in accordance with these Guidelines, and that the results of the
   NPC may be provided to the Department.

   For purposes of these Guidelines, Youth Connections personnel are defined as:
 employees (other than teachers) of the organisation/subcontractor/consortium who are engaged/or
  to be engaged to deliver Youth Connections services
 personnel (other than teachers) within the organisation who interact with participants or have access
  to their personal information (including personnel of organisations involved through a consortium or
  subcontracting arrangement)
 volunteers (other than teachers) who support the delivery of the program.


   Where the NPC for working with children reveals any convictions or pending charges, the Provider
   must not allow those personnel to have contact with children as part of the Youth Connections
   program, without written authorisation from the Department (see Section 10.7).

   The cost of obtaining a NPC for working with children is to be borne by the Provider. The time taken
   to obtain a check will vary between the AFP, state police and CrimTrac Brokers.

   NPCs are current at the time of making and the Department requires that these checks be renewed
   every two (2) years from the date of the initial check.

   A Provider must securely maintain records of all checks and make all documentation accessible for
   viewing by Departmental staff during site monitoring visits and otherwise on request. This
   documentation will include the NPC records for all Youth Connections personnel, including those
   from consortium members and/or subcontracted organisations.

   It is the responsibility of Providers to ensure that information obtained from these checks is assessed
   to determine the suitability of an applicant before the offer of employment to deliver Youth
   Connections is confirmed.

   Once the NPC application has been lodged with the AFP, a state police force or a CrimTrac Broker, a
   prospective employee may sign an Interim Declaration for working with children if they meet the
   requirements allowing them to deliver Youth Connections services pending the outcome of their NPC
   application (see Section 10.6).

   Where a NPC for working with children check returns adverse findings, Section 10.7 will apply and
   procedures outlined therein must be completed before an offer of permanent employment in Youth
   Connections may apply.

   Providers must also ensure appropriate risk management strategies are in place when services are
   provided to young people across a broad range of ages. For example, it may not be appropriate for
   young participants to be left unsupervised with much older participants.

   Providers must decide which of the following services to use to obtain the NPC for working with
   children.

   Australian Federal Police (AFP)
   The cost of obtaining a NPC through the Australian Federal Police is currently $43.00 and the current
   processing time for routine criminal record checks is approximately twenty-five (25) working days.



                                                                                                         45
      Youth Connections providers can contact the AFP Criminal Records Client Services Team on
      telephone (02) 6202 3333 or facsimile (02) 6287 0269 to discuss whether they need to set up an
      account or whether they can pay via cheque or money order. The preferred contact is via e-mail at
      criminalrecords-clientservices@afp.gov.au. The e-mail should specify that the check is being
      undertaken for the purpose of complying with the requirements of the Department of Education,
      Employment and Workplace Relations in relation to working with children. The website is currently
      http://www.afp.gov.au/what-we-do/police-checks/national-police-checks.aspx

      NOTE: Please check via the email address above that the application form available via the AFP
      website is the correct application form for the purposes of obtaining a National Police Check for
      Working with Children.

      State/Territory Police
      The cost of obtaining a NPC through state/territory police forces varies. Youth Connections providers
      should contact their nearest police station for further information on costs and processing times and
      to ensure that their state/territory police force can conduct a NPC in a manner that satisfies their
      obligations under Schedule 3 of the Youth Connections Contract.

      CrimTrac accredited Agencies or Brokers
      CrimTrac-accredited agencies or brokers are authorised to conduct national criminal history checks
      through the CrimTrac Agency. A list of accredited agencies or brokers is available here:
      http://www.crimtrac.gov.au/criminal_history_checks/IndividualChecks.html

10.6 Interim Procedures Pending NPC for Working with Children check
     Providers may have potential Youth Connections personnel complete an Interim Working with
     Children Check Declaration provided:
    the person has lodged an application for a NPC for working with children with the AFP, a state police
     force of a CrimTrac Broker
    the person understands that they may be contracted to deliver Youth Connections services on the
     condition that they fully satisfy the Department’s working with children requirements including
     compliance with any applicable state-based working with children check requirements
    the person understands that a report of their NPC for working with children must be furnished to the
     Provider within a three month period
    they sign an Interim Working with Children Declaration Form declaring that they have no convictions
     or pending charges relating to:
                      violence against children
                      sexual offences
                      offences involving pornography, or
                      offences involving dealing or trafficking of illegal drugs.

      If after a period of three months from completing an Interim Working with Children Check
      Declaration, any personnel have not obtained a NPC, those personnel must not deliver any further
      Youth Connections services that involve contact with children until a NPC is obtained. Where the
      NPC returns a finding of any charges or convictions, Section 10.7 will apply and procedures outlined
      therein must be completed before that person can continue to deliver the Youth Connections
      program in a manner that involves contact with children.

      Providers must keep on the person’s file evidence that the NPC for working with children has been
      lodged with the Australian Federal Police.

      Note 1: the Interim Working with Children Declaration Form should be downloaded from YATMIS
                                                                                                           46
      onto the Provider’s letterhead.

10.7 Procedure for handling adverse criminal history checks
     The purpose of these procedures is to assist Providers and the Department in assessing the suitability
     of prospective and current Youth Connections personnel in cases where the NPC for working with
     children checks reveal an adverse result.

      An ‘adverse result’ means any information included on the NPC for working with children that
      indicates a person has a conviction or a pending criminal charge.

      In cases where a NPC for working with children reveals an adverse result, it is the responsibility of the
      Provider to contact the applicant to verify his/her identity and to confirm that the information in the
      report is consistent with the applicant’s own understanding of their history.

      It is the responsibility of the Provider:

         a) in cases where the applicant’s identity and criminal history have been verified, in consultation
            with the Department, assess the applicant’s suitability for employment in Youth Connections
            on the basis of the verified information and advise the applicant of the outcome. The Provider
            must consult with the Department as part of this assessment process.
         b) in cases where the applicant’s identity and criminal history is unable to be verified, to advise
            the applicant that the matter will be referred to the Department for further consideration and
         c) to refer all cases as mentioned in b) above to the Department through their Project Delegate.


      A Provider must not allow anyone for whom an adverse result has been received to work with young
      people in Youth Connections, unless the Department has given written approval for the Provider to
      do so.

      The Department may, at any time, direct the Provider not to employ applicants who have an adverse
      criminal history record (see Section 10.1).

10.8 Offences which make an applicant ineligible
     You must immediately notify the Department if any individual who has contact with young people in
     the course of their involvement with Youth Connections is the subject of a charge or allegation
     relating to:
                   violence against children
                   any sexual offence
                   any offence involving pornography, or
                   any offence involving the trafficking or dealing of illegal drugs.

      If an individual has any matters of this nature before a court, these matters must be resolved and a
      judgement handed down before the person will be considered as potentially eligible to be engaged
      or continue their engagement in Youth Connections.

      The Department will make a decision as to whether an individual who is the subject of a notification
      in accordance with this Guideline can continue to have contact with Youth Connections participants.
      A Provider will ensure that the individual in question does not have contact with Youth Connections
      participants while a decision from the Department is pending.




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11. Role of the Department

11.1 The Department’s responsibilities
     The Department seeks to establish effective relationships with Youth Connections providers to
     support achievement of the desired program objectives and outcomes. Ongoing monitoring will
     provide opportunities to enhance relationships between Youth Connections providers and the
     Department and encourage the attainment of high quality outcomes for young people. The
     Department seeks to encourage two-way feedback and generate learning through connecting good
     practice with policy development.

      The Department will maintain overall program management responsibility, which encompasses
      financial and relationship management. The key stakeholders for Youth Connections providers within
      the Department are located in National Office Canberra and the Department’s state/territory office
      network.

      The Department’s responsibilities include:
    developing and providing advice to Ministers on Youth Connections policy and administration,
     including development and updating of the Guidelines and supporting documentation
    developing and maintaining strong relationships with Providers, using formal and informal
     communication channels to support successful contract and program management
    establishing, maintaining and managing relationships with key stakeholders including state/territory
     education systems, relevant state/territory departments, local government and other agencies as
     required
    managing the Youth Connections Outcomes Framework and Evaluation Strategy
    collecting, analysing and reporting information on the overall performance of Providers, including
     financial management issues
    conducting monitoring visits to Providers to discuss performance, progress against outcomes and/or
     program development
    monitoring the performance of Providers and taking appropriate action in the event of unsatisfactory
     performance
    making payments to contractually compliant Providers
    investigating complaints against Providers and taking action where required
    investigating allegations or evidence of fraud or other malpractice by Providers and taking action if
     required
    managing YATMIS for performance and financial management purposes, as well as reporting
    overall program evaluation
    Managing the review of progress towards National Partnership outcomes and the handover of
     program funding to each jurisdiction as targets are achieved.


      NOTE: Youth Connections providers will not be relieved of any of their obligations under these
      Guidelines which form part of the Services Contract, or otherwise at law, because of any responsibility
      that the Department may have, or any failure by the Department to exercise those responsibilities.

11.2 Program support
     The Department is responsible for policy development and the administration and support of the
     Youth Connections network.

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   The Department will provide support to Youth Connection providers in a number of ways including:
 Consultation – through the establishment of State/Territory and National Provider Networks to
  promote partnerships, discussion and feedback between the Australian Government and Youth
  Connections providers
 Induction, Development and support – the provision of day-to-day assistance and advice to Youth
  Connections providers on strategic and operational matters
 Professional development and training – the development and delivery of training for Youth
  Connections providers through conferences and workshops offered to the network
 Infrastructure support – the provision of practical support, such as the Youth Connections internet
  site (YATMIS) and program templates, etc.
 Administration – support for and advice about sound governance practices including quality
  assurance, Youth Connections contract management and financial management.


   NOTE: Youth Connections providers will not be relieved of any of their obligations under these
   Guidelines, the Services Contract, or otherwise at law, because of any support that the Department
   may or may not provide.




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12. Reporting and Monitoring of Performance

12.1 Accountability
     Youth Connections providers are accountable for the delivery of the program and must adhere to the
     reporting requirements in the Guidelines which form part of the Services Contract.

      The information reported by Youth Connections providers will be used by the Department to ensure
      that providers are compliant with the requirements of the Services Contract, and specifically for
      monitoring their performance against the contracted milestones.

12.2 Service Plan
     At the start of every year the Provider must submit a Service Plan on YATMIS. This Service Plan will
     outline the following:
    details of the service delivery model
    details of agreed outcomes for each of the elements of Youth Connections program services,
    proposed changes to the indicative outcome range, including the mix of progressive and final
     outcomes
    the percentage of expected outcomes to be achieved for young people in each Connection Level
    the percentage of outcomes to be achieved for Indigenous and humanitarian refugee flagged
     cohorts, if applicable
    strategies to account for participant attrition and transfer
    alternative learning arrangements
    other strategies to identify young people at risk of disengaging or disengaged from education and
     training
    referral mechanisms
    how the service will be delivered in the Service Region with regard to state and territory programs to
     provide a continuum of service and avoid duplication
    how effective relationships with schools, parents, and youth and community agencies will be
     established and maintained
    proposed school contact schedules and partnerships with schools
    strategies for effective working relationships with Partnership Brokers and how they will operate
    consortia and subcontracting relationships, if applicable
    risk management strategies to minimise incidents that may occur through working with a range of
     young people
    procedures for incident reporting and management which inform the risk management strategies.

      NOTE: Any proposed changes identified in the Service Plan will need to be agreed and approved by
      the Department before they take effect.

      A template for the Service Plan will be provided by the Department each year.

      The Service Plan must be submitted each year of the contract period on the appropriate template on
      YATMIS by the date as agreed by the Department.

      The Service Plan must be approved by the Department. Payment of the relevant service fee will be

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      contingent on that approval.

12.3 Evaluative Report
     The Evaluative Report is a report from the Provider on the effectiveness of the strategies and
     activities undertaken throughout the year, and the outcomes achieved.

      The Department will supply a template for the Evaluative Report and Youth Connections providers
      will be asked to evaluate their services across all elements of the Youth Connections program.

      Providers must submit their Evaluative Report by the date outlined by the Department in the Services
      Contract.

      The evaluations made in a Provider’s report should be used to inform the development of the
      following year’s Service Plan.

      The Department expects that Providers have their own mechanisms to review their work. Youth
      Connections providers will be recording the services they deliver and the outcomes they achieve in
      YATMIS. Providers must have evidence to support what is entered into YATMIS. This will enable
      Providers to evaluate their service delivery at the end of the year.

12.4 Record keeping
     Youth Connections providers must securely maintain a file for each registered participant containing
     details of all contacts with them and the Youth Connections services provided to them.

      The participant file will:
    include participant details and eligibility checks (or waiver where applicable)
    detail the assessment of the young person (including barriers)
    indicate the resulting decision about the Connection Level of the young person
    include a hard-copy of the Re-engagement Plan
    include details of the date and mode of each contact
    include notes by Provider personnel detailing the services provided and assessing their effectiveness
    other correspondence
    the original Youth Connections Wellbeing survey (PWI-SC) responses and other surveys

      Where the Youth Connections provider has delivered youth focussed activities, Providers must
      maintain appropriate records documenting the activities undertaken - including risk assessments,
      emergency contact details, special requirements and permissions granted for all participants.

      Participant files must be maintained with regard to the Information Privacy Principles (see Section
      16.3). Only a subset of the information stored on a participant’s file should be placed on YATMIS.
      The Department is continually reporting on the program outcomes, so files and YATMIS data must be
      kept up to date, not just updated quarterly when the YATMIS data declaration is due.

      The structure, timing and method of keeping case notes will be determined by the Provider. There
      must be sufficient information in the case notes to ensure that all decisions about service for the
      young person are based on evidence, review of progress occurs and there is sufficient information to
      enable the Department to determine the quality of service in line with the objectives of the program.
      The manner in which Provider’s keep case notes (in addition to YATMIS) is a decision for each
      Provider; however a hard copy of these case notes (word processed or hand written) must be placed

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      on the participant’s file.

      Participant files and records relating to Youth Connections service delivery are owned by the
      Department and must be made available to the Department upon request. At the end of the
      contract period, or if requested earlier by the Department, all participant files, including exited
      participants, must be returned to the Department. Participant records must be securely attached to
      the files.

      If a participant is transferred by a Provider in another Service Region (as outlined in Section 4.13), the
      participant will need to sign a form consenting to the release of their information from the former
      Provider to the new Provider. This form is available on YATMIS. The original file must be sent by the
      former Provider to the new Provider by secure means. The former Provider must retain a copy of the
      documentation on the participant file in order to substantiate services provided and any outcomes
      achieved.

      When Youth Connections providers are part of a consortium or have subcontracting arrangements in
      place, the lead agency is responsible for ensuring that the record keeping practices for all consortium
      members/subcontractors are appropriate.

12.5 Recording data on YATMIS
     Providers must record details of their work and outcomes achieved, across all elements of Youth
     Connections services, on YATMIS.

      The information required includes:
    details of all participants enrolled (including name, date of birth, gender, eligibility details, school and
     education details, participant characteristics)
    responses to the Youth Connections Wellbeing Survey (PWI-SC) and Level of Engagement questions
    assessment information including evidence to support the Connection Level selected for the
     participant
    details of the Re-engagement Plan, such as strategies to overcome barriers, strategies to engage/re-
     engage with education, training or community, the agreed contact schedule, desired outcomes for
     the participant
    details of services delivered to participants
    details of outcomes achieved for participants
    numbers of eligible young people who have not been able to receive service due to unmet demand
    information relating to Outreach and Re-engagement Activities conducted by the Provider, including
     outcomes achieved
    details of activities undertaken to strengthen services and build capacity in the service region, and
     the results of those activities, including outcomes achieved.


      Youth Connections providers must ensure that their data entry is up-to-date and endorsed by a
      person authorised to do so on behalf of the organisation by the dates outlined by the Department in
      the services contract. The Department has access to data recorded in YATMIS and will use this data
      to inform the assessment of provider performance.

      Providers should put measures in place to ensure the quality and consistency of data recorded in
      YATMIS by Youth Connections staff members.


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 12.6 Provision of Financial Statements
      Where the Department identifies performance or financial viability issues the Provider may be
      requested to provide to the Department a full set of financial statements. If a Provider is involved in
      a consortium/subcontracting arrangement this request may include a full set of financial statements
      from all consortium partners/subcontractors.

       This will involve supplying independently audited financial statements for the most recent complete
       financial year. The statements must be accrual-based accounts and include profit and loss, balance
       sheet, statement of cash flow and notes to the accounts. Where statements are audited, include the
       auditor’s statement and the name, qualifications and address of the auditor.

       If the Provider operates as a trust, the Provider must provide the above financial information for
       both the trust and the trustee. If the Provider is a wholly-owned subsidiary reliant upon a parent
       entity for financial support, the Provider must provide the above financial information for both the
       subsidiary and parent company along with evidence that financial support by the parent is
       guaranteed.

 12.7 Surveys and case studies
      The Department may request providers to complete surveys, survey their participants or provide
      case studies to assist in program evaluation, inform program improvement and policy development,
      and to promote Youth Connections.

       Youth Connections providers are required to meet the requirements of these requests in a within the
       timeframes determined by the Department.

12.7.1 Participant surveys
       Providers may be required to conduct surveys of participants in Youth Connections. Providers will be
       required to encourage and assist participants to complete surveys throughout their participation in
       Youth Connections. These surveys will be used to assist in determining a young person’s progress
       towards or achievement of outcomes.

       Surveys may also be used to assess young people’s satisfaction with their participation in Youth
       Connections and the services they received.

       NOTE: Providers must ensure that the survey forms have appropriate privacy notices which inform
       participants of what uses will be made of the personal information in the survey and to whom the
       personal information will be disclosed (see Section 16.3).

 12.8 Assessment of performance
      A provider’s performance will be measured by the outcomes they achieve. These will be assessed
      against the:
     contracted number of young people outcomes must be achieved for (indicative outcomes range)
     the proportion of outcomes required against each Connection Level as outlined in the Service Plan
     the proportion of outcomes achieved for Indigenous and/or humanitarian refugee young people, if
      required
     the outcomes achieved for Outreach and Re-engagement Activities
     the outcomes achieved for Strengthening Services in the Region Activities.

       The Department will monitor a Provider’s progress towards meeting their agreed outcomes.
       Information about provider performance will be gathered from a number of sources including:

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    the information on young people enrolled in YATMIS and the progress that these young people are
     making towards meeting their individual outcomes
    the engagements and other information recorded for enrolled participants on YATMIS
    other information recorded in YATMIS, including details on how the Youth Connections provider is
     delivering Outreach and Re-engagement Activities in a region and the effectiveness of their
     Strengthening Services in the Region Activities
    Program Monitoring Meetings
    stakeholder feedback
    other measurement tools, such as surveys
    comparing service delivery to tender documentation, Service Plans and Evaluative Reports
    formal correspondence
    the Summary Reports on YATMIS
    day to day interactions and formal performance discussions with the Provider.


      The Department may consider the following elements in the assessment of a Provider’s
      performance:
    targeting Youth Connections services to those most in need of assistance
    ensuring the balance of service delivery is meeting the agreed needs of the whole Service Region
    equity of access
    quantity and suitability of education and support provided to each participant
    relationships with key stakeholders particularly the cooperating state and territory programs and the
     Partnership Brokers
    compliance with other contractual obligations.


12.9 Program monitoring
     Program monitoring and Program Monitoring Meetings (PMMs) will be undertaken by the
     Department to assist in assessing performance. It will be an opportunity for the Department to work
     with Providers to facilitate high performance in delivering outcomes. Program monitoring may be
     done in collaboration with state and territory jurisdictions.

      Program monitoring can provide an opportunity to:
    establish a cooperative working relationship and a common understanding between the Department
     and the Provider in relation to the program expectations and contractual requirements
    review suitability of staffing arrangements and professional development, including currency of staff
     NPC working with children checks
    confirm eligibility and appropriateness of the services delivered to participants
    discuss specific matters or issues
    review Client Registration and Consent Forms
    review Re-engagement Plans
    review record keeping arrangements



                                                                                                        54
    review other documentation required by the Provider to satisfy contractual obligations such as
     insurance
    review arrangements for compliance with privacy legislation
    discuss and resolve performance issues
    investigate complaints received
    ensure appropriate access by staff to Contract documentation
    review suitability of the premises for providing assistance under the program including accessibility
     for people with disabilities
    meet with participants and other key stakeholders to measure satisfaction with the services
     delivered
    investigate and discuss anomalies arising from reviews of participants’ files or feedback from other
     stakeholders.


      All participant files and program records must be available to Departmental staff during on-site
      program monitoring and otherwise on request.

12.10 Unsatisfactory performance
      If the Department assesses performance to be unsatisfactory, the Provider’s Notices Person will be
      contacted and advised in writing as to why the Department deems performance to be unsatisfactory
      and what action the Department requires the Provider to undertake.

      Some of the reasons for performance being deemed unsatisfactory include, but are not limited to:
    not making satisfactory progress towards achieving program outcomes across all elements of Youth
     Connections service delivery
    not satisfactorily meeting outcomes across the different Connection Levels
    not achieving a suitable mix of progressive and final outcomes
    registering ineligible participants
    purposely misclassifying participants in Connection Levels
    participant needs not adequately being identified or recorded
    assistance not sufficiently individualised in line with the needs and barriers identified in the
     assessment
    failure to establish or maintain effective working relationships with partners or stakeholders
    provision of incorrect or incomplete data entry (including where entries are inconsistent with hard-
     copy records) to the Department
    failure to record participant data on YATMIS within the required timeframes
    failure to comply with requirements in relation to Centrelink clients (including actioning referrals and
     updates on YATMIS)
    failure to provide contractually required documents such as the Service Plan or case studies when
     requested.


      The Department will use some or all of the following strategies for dealing with unsatisfactory
      performance:


                                                                                                            55
 Work with the Provider to identify why they are not meeting their agreed outcomes, and, where
  appropriate and in agreement with the Department, adjust these outcomes, or determine a plan
  whereby the Provider will be able to meet the original agreed outcomes over the next quarter.
 Work with the Provider to change the strategies they are using to deliver services in their region.
 Work with the Provider to implement greater input controls over how they allocate the service fees
  and deliver the elements of the program. This may involve, but is not limited to, the Department
  setting specific requirements for each Youth Connections program element including:
                o   the number of young people to be serviced
                o   the number of service delivery hours
                o   the nature of the service offered to the different groups of young people
                o   prescriptive Outreach and Re-engagement Activities and activities to Strengthen
                    Services in the Region
                o   timeframes to achieve outcomes.
 Increased monitoring by the Department, and where appropriate, state and territory governments.
 Withhold (temporarily or permanently) one or more quarterly payments in whole or in part.


   Any payment due may be deferred and/or reduced pending resolution of the areas of the servicing
   deemed unsatisfactory.




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13. Service Fees and Payments

13.1 Service fees
     In consultation with state and territory governments, the Department has developed a payment
     structure for Youth Connections which allocates service fees to Service Regions within each state and
     territory.

      The payment structure outlines how Youth Connections providers are expected to allocate
      proportions of the service fees to the different elements of Youth Connections service delivery.

      These allocations differ in each state and territory, depending on the way that the state and territory
      jurisdiction has requested that Youth Connections be tailored. The allocations may also vary
      between service regions within a state or territory, to take account of local circumstances.

      Specific allocations for individual regions are detailed in the Services Contract and will be reviewed
      annually as part of the Service Plan.

      Youth Connections providers will have the flexibility to re-allocate service fees across types of service
      delivery to a threshold of 10% in total for the Service Region. For example, a Youth Connections
      provider may recognise that they need to run more re-engagement activities to seek out severely
      disengaged young people. Providers can choose to move 5% of their service fees from Connection
      Level One and 5% of their service fees from Strengthening Services delivery into Outreach and Re-
      engagement Service delivery.

      Should a Provider choose to re-allocate service fees, they will still be required to meet the agreed
      proportional outcomes for each element of the Youth Connections program.

      Any proposed changes that exceed the 10% threshold must have the Department’s approval. These
      changes will need to be outlined in the Provider’s Service Plan each year. If the change is made after
      the Service Plan has been approved, the change will need to be negotiated and agreed in writing by
      the Department and the Service Plan will need to be updated to reflect the change.

      Providers have the flexibility to use their service fees so that they can best meet their agreed
      outcomes. A Provider does not have to utilise the same level of resources for each severely
      disengaged young person to whom they provide services. Youth Connections providers can allocate
      resources to each young person depending on the needs of that young person, so that the service
      delivered will assist that young person achieve outcomes.

13.2 Project milestones
     The quantity and quality of the services delivered will be monitored on an ongoing basis throughout
     the contract period. Service fee payments will be made quarterly in advance and ongoing payments
     will be contingent on Providers making satisfactory progress towards and meeting their agreed
     outcomes.

      Milestones and payments will be made according to Schedules 1 and 2 of the Services Contract.

13.3 Tax Invoices
     The Tax Invoice must contain information as required by 29 -70 of the A New Tax System (Goods And
     Services Tax) Act 1999 (GST Act) and Regulation 29-70 of the GST Regulations. In addition, the Tax
     Invoice must include:
    name of Provider
    Provider’s ABN
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    Provider’s address and contact details
    “Tax Invoice” shown prominently
    invoice date
    invoice number
    addressed to Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations (or DEEWR), marked
     attention to the Department’s Project Delegate
    payment description – including program name, Service Region number and program payment
    program payments - these need to be clearly separated and not totalled
    contracted amount - GST exclusive and GST amounts must be clearly identified
    totals must add up
    Provider’s bank account details and BSB for payment of the invoice by electronic funds transfer.


      The bank details on the Tax Invoice should match the Vendor Record form supplied to the
      Department. If the Youth Connections provider organisation changes bank account details then they
      must provide the Department with written advice (with the organisation details as part of the
      signature block) of the change.

      The date for payment is within 30 days after delivery of a correctly rendered Tax Invoice to the
      Department and after satisfactorily meeting the reporting requirements as set out in the Services
      Contract.

      A separate Tax Invoice for each Youth Attainment and Transitions Service Region must be submitted.

13.4 Changes to contact, address and bank details
     Changes to the Youth Connections provider organisation’s contact, address and bank details will
     need to be recorded in the Department’s financial management information system.

      It is an administrative requirement that Youth Connections providers submit a Vendor Data Form to
      their relevant State or Territory Program Manager authorising the update of this information on the
      system.




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14. Contractual Obligations

14.1 Youth Connections Services Contract
     A Youth Connections Services Contract is a contract between the Department and a Youth
     Connections provider organisation.

      The Youth Connections Services Contract is the primary source containing the agreed terms
      between the parties and should be read as taking priority over anything contained within these
      Guidelines.

14.2 Execution of Services Contract
     The Department will provide Youth Connections providers with two originals of the Services Contract
     for initialling, signature and witnessing. Once signed, Youth Connections providers are to return both
     copies of the Services Contract to the Department for signature and dating by the Department’s
     Youth Connections Project Delegate (refer to Section 14.4). The Service Contracts will not be
     effective until correctly executed by both parties.

      Services Contracts (including Appendices) must be initialled by both parties at the bottom right hand
      corner of every page.

      Once fully executed, the Department will forward a signed and dated original of the Services
      Contract to the Youth Connections provider for their records.

14.3 Contract Variations
     A variation is a change to any of the originally agreed terms and conditions of the Services Contract
     executed by both parties.

      Variations are to be in writing and signed by the Department and the Youth Connections providers
      and shall be binding on the parties only if implemented in accordance with the process stipulated in
      the Services Contract.

      If Youth Connections providers would like to request a variation to the Services Contract, the person
      advised as the Notices Person must make the request in writing to the relevant state or territory
      Youth Connections Program Manager detailing the reasons for the request.

      The Department will consider, at its absolute discretion, whether or not it agrees to the proposed
      variation to the Services Contract.

      If the Department requests a variation to the Services Contract, it will be detailed in writing and sent
      from the Department’s Project Delegate to the Notices Person.

      Note: Youth Connections providers are to notify their relevant State/Territory Program Manager in
      writing of any changes to bank account and insurance details. Youth Connections providers must
      obtain written approval from their relevant State/Territory Program Manager prior to changing their
      consortium arrangements or subcontracting the performance of any of its obligations under the
      Services Contract or these Guidelines.

14.4 Youth Connections Project Delegate, Program Managers and Contract Managers
     The Youth Connections Project Delegate is a representative of the Department, defined in the
     Services Contract as the person who has responsibility for:
    approving and signing Services Contract documentation on behalf of the Department
    accepting and issuing any written notification under the Services Contract.
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      The Youth Connections Program Manager is a representative of the Department in each
      state/territory who has responsibility for:
    approving payments to Providers under the program
    supervising performance of Providers (including approving drafts of Services Contract material).


      The Program Manager can assign responsibility for these functions to other Departmental officers
      and advise Youth Connections providers accordingly.

      The Youth Connections Contract Managers are Departmental contract managers who have
      responsibility and authority under the contract for:
    supervising and monitoring the performance of Youth Connections providers (including approving
     drafts of Services Contract material)
    recommending payments upon Providers demonstrating satisfactory performance against milestones
     and meeting all other contractual obligations.

14.5 Notices Person
     The Notices Person is the person nominated by the Youth Connections provider’s governing body
     who can:
    accept notices for the Youth Connections provider
    provide notices to the Department requesting changes to the Services Contract.


      The Notices Person’s details are set out at in the Services Contract.




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15. Information Technology and Support

15.1 Youth Attainment and Transitions website
     Youth Attainment and Transitions information is available at www.youth.gov/transitions

      This information is designed to guide users through career and transitions options as well as link in
      with state and territory government initiatives.

15.2 Youth Connections website
     Information about Youth Connections, including contact details for Youth Connections providers and
     a range of useful links and resources is available at www.youth.gov/transitions

      Detailed information about the Youth Connections program including the Program Guidelines,
      Outcomes Framework and Service Region maps are available on the Department’s website at
      http://www.deewr.gov.au/Youth/YouthAttainmentandTransitions/Pages/YouthConnections.aspx

15.3 Access to the internet
     All Providers are required to be connected to the internet via an Internet Service Provider (ISP).
     Providers must manage their own arrangements in this regard.

      It is essential that Youth Connections providers have an electronic mail (e-mail) account to send and
      receive electronic mail from the Department. ISPs can provide details on obtaining this service.

15.4 Computer equipment requirements
     The minimum specifications required for computer hardware and software to support the
     Department’s Youth Connections information management system,, YATMIS are:
    128Mb RAM, 800Mhz Intel Pentium processor (or equivalent), 10 Gb hard disk
    web browser software (e.g. Microsoft Internet Explorer 7.00 or later)
    56 kbps dial-up modem (ADSL preferable)
    internet connection through a well established Internet Service Provider
    minimum screen resolution of 1024 x 768.


15.5 Information technology costs
     The costs charged for internet access are those charged by the ISP. Providers will be required to
     meet all information technology costs including:
    the costs of sending and receiving data from Departmental systems
    all Internet Service Provider’s charges
    the costs of acquiring, installing and maintaining equipment.


15.6 Youth and Transitions Management Information System (YATMIS)
     All Youth Connections providers will be required to access the Department’s information
     management system, YATMIS. Access is via the Department’s internet site at
     https://yatmis.deewr.gov.au

      A training site is at
      https://yatmistraining.deewr.gov.au

      YATMIS is used to assist with the management of Youth Connections and information recorded on
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       the system is used to monitor the performance of Providers and report on program achievements.

       YATMIS is also used to:
     maintain up-to-date information about Provider organisation’s site details and staff
     collect information about registered participants
     collect information about the performance of Youth Connections providers and relationships with
      stakeholders
     generate reports about the performance of individual projects and the program
     facilitate the completion of events such as Service Plans and Evaluative Reports.


 15.7 Access to YATMIS
      The Department provides unique password access for Youth Connections personnel and authorised
      Departmental staff to the secure modules contained on YATMIS.

       A logon ID and password is required to access the secure part of YATMIS. To obtain a logon ID, a
       User Access Request Form must be completed and then forwarded for approval to the provider’s
       Security Officer as identified in the Youth Connections Contract. The User Access Request Form is
       available to authorised users on the YATMIS internet site.

       Provider staff who have access to YATMIS must abide by the security responsibilities outlined on the
       YATMIS access request form. YATMIS passwords should remain confidential and should be changed
       regularly. Passwords and logon IDs must never shared. Providers should contact DEEWR
       immediately if they suspect the security of YATMIS has been compromised.

       Providers must notify the Department within one business day when Youth Connections personnel
       who have secure access to YATMIS leave the organisation or no longer require access.

       If the Provider has not notified the Department when a staff member is no longer involved in Youth
       Connections and that staff member continues to access YATMIS, the Provider will be held liable for
       any damage caused or data entry made by that the staff member.

       All requests to remove access to YATMIS for staff who have left the organisation must be submitted
       directly from the relevant YATMIS Security Officer (see Section 15.7.1) to the YATMIS Help Desk (see
       Section 15.8). For more information see the YATMIS Security Officer Manual or YATMIS User Guide
       for Youth Connections which is available under the ‘Resources’ tab on YATMIS.

15.7.1 YATMIS Security Officer
       The YATMIS Security Officer is a Youth Connections staff member who has been identified as being
       able to approve YATMIS access forms and other access changes for other staff members within their
       organisation. Every contract that is recorded in YATMIS must have an assigned Security Officer.
       There can only be one Security Officer for each Provider.

       All requests to add new users to YATMIS, change user access levels and details in YATMIS (eg. name,
       email address), and remove users from YATMIS must be submitted directly by the relevant Security
       Officer to the YATMIS Help Desk. The Help Desk will not process any requests to add, change or
       remove YATMIS access that do not come directly from the relevant Security Officer.

 15.8 YATMIS Help Desk support
      The Department provides a Help Desk facility for YATMIS. The Department will not charge a fee for
      the YATMIS Help Desk facility. Youth Connections providers will, however, be required to pay access
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      costs such as those associated with telephone calls to the Help Desk. The YATMIS Help Desk
      telephone number is 1300 729 252. Providers can also contact YATMIS via email at
       yatmis@deewr.gov.au

      Most ISPs also provide a Help Desk facility for internet service related queries.

15.9 Updating contact and address details on YATMIS
     Providers must record and update their contact and address details on YATMIS. It is the responsibility
     of the Youth Connections provider to ensure that this information is correct and up-to-date as
     stakeholders and the Department use the addresses and contact information to make contact with
     Youth Connections providers.

      Youth Connections providers will be able to update staff contact details on YATMIS, but will not be
      able to update details of the Notices Person as this requires a Contract Variation (refer to Section
      14.5).

      Refer to the YATMIS User Guide for Youth Connections which is available under the ‘Resources’ tab
      on YATMIS.




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 16. Other Administrative Matters

 16.1 Reporting suspected maltreatment or abuse of children
      If a Youth Connections provider has reasonable grounds to suspect that a Youth Connections any
      participant is at risk of harm, they must report to the relevant state/territory government
      department the name of the participant and the grounds for suspecting that they are at risk of harm.

 16.2 Complaint handling process
      Youth Connections providers must have a dedicated process in place to address complaints and
      concerns about the program.

        Every person employed or contracted by Youth Connections providers who will have contact with
        Youth Connections participants should be able to inform a client how to make a complaint and what
        will happen to the complaint.

        Providers are obligated to explain their complaints handling process to participants at the time of
        assessment and to give them a copy of the complaints handling process that includes the
        Departments free-call number: 1300 363 079.

16.2.1 Complaints against Youth Connections providers
       Any person may lodge complaints or provide feedback in relation to Youth Connections providers
       directly to the Department by contacting the Department’s free-call number: 1300 363 079.

        The Department will aim to resolve a complaint within 30 days of its receipt. Where it is not possible
        to resolve a complaint within 30 days, concerned parties will be kept informed of progress. The
        Department may be required to contact participants, schools, parents or other relevant parties when
        investigating a complaint.

        Where a complaint involves an allegation of fraud or criminal activity, the matter must be reported
        directly to the Project Delegate or to the Department’s National Investigations Unit by emailing
        fraud@deewr.gov.au. The indicative 30 days complaint resolution time will not apply in such cases.

        If you wish to understand more about reporting fraud to the Department, please visit
        http://www.deewr.gov.au/Department/Pages/HowtoreportfraudtoDEEWR.aspx

16.2.2 Complaints against the Department
       If a participant or Provider is dissatisfied with the administration of Youth Connections program they
       can raise their concerns with the Commonwealth Ombudsman by calling 1300 362 072 or by emailing
       ombudsman@ombudsman.gov.au

        The Ombudsman will generally prefer that the Department is given an opportunity to deal with the
        complaint in the first instance.

 16.3 Privacy of participant personal information
      In administering the Youth Connections program, the Department is bound by the provisions of the
      Privacy Act 1988. Contracts with Providers will require the Providers to comply with the Information
      Privacy Principles (IPPs) set out in Section 14 of the Privacy Act 1988 which prescribe the rules for
      handling personal information.

        Providers, their employees, and persons who are in possession or control of records containing
        personal information collected for the purposes of Youth Connections must ensure that they abide
        by the IPPs and the Privacy Act 1988 when handling that information. In particular, they must ensure:
     personal information is collected in accordance with IPPs 1-3
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    suitable storage arrangements, including appropriate filing procedures are in place i.e. the minimum
     requirement for storage of these files is a lockable commercial grade cabinet
    suitable security arrangements exist for all records, including electronic records, containing personal
     information, including during transportation of files in motor vehicles or by other means
    access to a person’s own personal information held by the Provider is made available to the person
     at no charge
    records are accurate, up-to-date, complete and not misleading
    where a record is found to be inaccurate, the correction is made
    where a person requests that a record be amended because it is inaccurate but the record is found
     to be accurate, the details of the request for amendment are noted on the record
    the personal information is only to be used for the purposes for which it was collected, unless an
     exception under IPP 10 applies, and
    personal information is only to be disclosed in accordance with IPP 11.

      The Youth Connections Registration Form contains a Notice entitled “The Program Participant Privacy
      Rights”. This is known as an “IPP2 Notice” under the Privacy Act 1988, and is used for informing
      participants of the purposes for which their personal information is being collected, whether that
      collection is authorised or required by or under law, and to whom the information is usually
      disclosed. It will require the Provider to explain to the participant the Provider’s obligations regarding
      the above matters in certain circumstances. Providers may be required to provide the IPP2 Notice to
      participants who are ‘young people’ (under 18 years of age). In these circumstances, the Provider
      should ensure that the young person has sufficient maturity to understand what is being proposed in
      the IPP2 Notice. If he/she lacks that understanding, the consent of the young person’s parent or
      guardian must be obtained. If there are any doubts regarding this aspect, the matter may be referred
      to the Department.

      Providers must use the Youth Connections Client Registration and Consent Form (see Section 4.5.1)
      which is located on YATMIS under Youth Connections Resources as it complies with the Information
      Privacy Principles.

      Complaints about breaches of privacy must be referred to:
           Privacy Contact Officer
           Legal and Investigations Group
           Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations
           GPO Box 9880
           CANBERRA ACT 2601

      Privacy complaints can be made directly to the Federal Privacy Commissioner, however the Federal
      Privacy Commissioner will generally prefer that the Department be given an opportunity to deal with
      the complaint in the first instance.

      Youth Connections providers should seek their own independent advice regarding queries about the
      application of the Privacy Act 1988 to their activities.

16.4 Freedom of Information (FOI) requests
     All documents in the possession of the Department including those in relation to the Youth
     Connections program are subject to the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (FOI Act).




                                                                                                             65
       The FOI Act provides every person with a legally enforceable right to obtain access to a document of
       an agency or an official document of a minister, unless the document falls within one of the
       exemptions set out in Part IV of the FOI Act.

       To the extent required by the FOI Act, where documents captured by a request contain information
       affecting another person’s privacy, relate to business, commercial or financial affairs of a third party,
       or contain information that may affect Commonwealth-state relations, the decision-maker will
       consult with individuals or organisations affected prior to making any decision on access to such
       documents.

       All FOI requests must be immediately referred to the Department’s FOI team at the following
       address:
              FOI Team Leader
              Administrative Law Branch
              Legal and Investigations Group
              Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations
              C148CW2 – FOI
              GPO Box 9880
              CANBERRA ACT 2601

              Or email foi@deewr.gov.au

       Further information in relation to making a FOI request to DEEWR is available at
       http://www.deewr.gov.au/Department/Pages/FreedomofInformation.aspx

 16.5 Risk management strategies
      Youth Connections providers should ensure that they have appropriate risk management strategies
      in place (including the creation and implementation of a risk management plan) and ensure that their
      delivery of Youth Connections services is in a manner that takes into account the particular needs
      and backgrounds of the young people that may be involved (which could include prior criminal
      activity, violent behaviours, etc.).

       Risk management strategies should be established to minimise incidents that may occur through
       dealing with a range of young people and should include procedures for incident reporting and
       management (see Section 16.5.1).

       Providers must also ensure appropriate risk management strategies are in place when providing
       services to young people across a broad range of ages. For example, it may not be appropriate for
       young participants to be left unsupervised with much older participants.

16.5.1 Disciplinary and incident management
       Youth Connections providers must manage the behaviour of participants and implement strategies
       and procedures to address potential misbehaviour issues. Youth Connections staff must have
       appropriate experience and training for dealing with challenging behaviours.

       Disciplinary and incident management matters must be recorded on participant files for Provider use.
       Providers must make these records available to the Department during on-site monitoring visits if
       requested, or at any other time.

 16.6 Subcontractors
      Subcontracting is an arrangement where the Youth Connections provider engages a person or
      organisation to deliver any part of the services that the Provider is legally bound to deliver under their
      contract with the Commonwealth, where such a person or organisation is a separate legal entity to
                                                                                                              66
      the Youth Connections provider, and is not engaged as an employee of the Youth Connections
      provider.

      Youth Connections providers must not, without the Department’s prior written approval, subcontract
      the performance of any obligations under their Services Contract. In approving subcontractors, the
      Department may impose any conditions on the subcontracting relationship as necessary.

      Youth Connections providers are fully responsible for ensuring the suitability of any subcontractor for
      the work to be carried out, and for ensuring that the work meets the requirements of the Services
      Contract.

      Subcontractors will be bound by the same conditions of service as Youth Connections providers are
      required to adhere to including, but not limited to, relevant state and territory legislation applicable
      to working with children and National Police Checks.

      The Department may, at any time, revoke its approval of any subcontractor from performing work
      related to Youth Connections on any reasonable ground by giving written notice to the Youth
      Connections provider. The Youth Connections provider must, at its own cost, promptly cease using
      that subcontractor and arrange their replacement with other personnel.

      Section 12.10 on Unsatisfactory Performance, applies to the activities of a subcontractor as it does to
      the Youth Connections provider. However, where the Department intends to respond to a potential
      underperformance issue by a subcontractor, the Department will deal with the Youth Connections
      provider, not the subcontractor.

16.7 Consortium arrangements
     Youth Connections providers must not, without the Department’s prior written approval, enter into
     or change consortium arrangements under their Services Contract.

      Consortium arrangements typically involve a number of separate legal entities joining together for
      the purpose of a joint enterprise. One of the organisations must act as the ‘lead organisation’ for the
      consortium in order to enter into a contract with the Commonwealth. The lead organisation must be
      able to legally bind the other organisations in the consortium to comply with the terms and
      conditions of the contract with the Commonwealth. The other organisations in the consortium must
      also declare to the Commonwealth that they agree to be legally bound under the contractual
      arrangement.

      In a consortium arrangement, all organisations within that consortium have legal obligations to the
      Commonwealth (as determined by the consortium arrangement) to perform the obligations in the
      contract. However, the Department will deal with the lead organisation on behalf of the Consortium
      in relation to all aspects of the contract and service fees will only be paid to the lead organisation.

      In forming a consortium, each organisation will need to agree with the other members how that
      consortium will manage the provision of the services, the distribution of funding and all other aspects
      of the legal obligations to the Commonwealth.

      The Department will not stipulate how members of a consortium form their agreement. The lead
      member of the consortia can decide the template or format that they will use to legally bind other
      members in the consortium to comply with the terms and conditions of the contract with the
      Commonwealth.

      Section 12.10 on Unsatisfactory Performance, applies to the activities of all consortium member
      organisations contracted to deliver Youth Connections services. However, where the Department
                                                                                                             67
intends to respond to a potential underperformance issue by a consortium member, the Department
will deal with the lead Youth Connections provider organisation, not the consortium member.




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17. Communication and Marketing

17.1 Australian Government due recognition
     All contracted Youth Connections providers are required to give due recognition of the Australian
     Government‘s Youth Connections program as outlined below.

17.1.1 Branding
      In order to give due recognition of the Australian Government’s Youth Connections program,
      promotional materials must include the following statement:

           ‘Youth Connections is funded by the Commonwealth of Australia as represented by the
           Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations’

      This statement must be included on:
    any Youth Connections website information they may develop
    all correspondence templates
    all publications
    all resources.

17.2 Style Guide and program logos
     The Department has developed a Style Guide which includes a set of logos and marketing templates
     for Youth Attainment and Transitions, and the Youth Connections and Partnership Brokers programs.

      All providers received a CD in the mail in 2010 which included an electronic copy of the Style Guide,
      pre-populated factsheets and design files for all of the marketing templates. The Style Guide and pre-
      populated fact sheets are also available on YATMIS.

      Additional copies of the Style Guide CD are available. Providers should contact their Contract
      Manager if they require another copy.

      It is not mandatory for Providers to use these resources. It is up to individual providers to decide
      what type of materials they would like to produce and use in their region. The Department advised
      that while the branding was under development providers could develop their own materials to raise
      awareness of the programs in their region. It is not necessary for providers to discontinue using those
      materials.

17.3 Media promotion and advertising
     Media releases, promotional material and all advertising (including radio announcements) by
     providers pertaining to Youth Connections may be provided to Provider’s Contract Manager for
     comment prior to release/publication.

      Media releases and advertising material must give due recognition of the Australian Government’s
      Youth Connections program.

      This requirement is not designed to stifle legitimate debate or prevent Youth Connections providers
      from engaging in advocacy activities. The Department gives the following undertakings in relation to
      its contracts with Youth Connections providers:
    No right or obligation arising under Services Contract between the Department and Youth
     Connections providers will be read or understood as limiting Youth Connections providers right to


                                                                                                          69
      enter into public debate or criticism of the Australian Government, its agencies, employees, servants
      or agents.
    The Department will not require Youth Connections providers to obtain advance approval of any
     advertisements, promotional activities or any other public relations matters in relation to Youth
     Connections contracts with the Department.
    If the Department possesses a contractual power to unilaterally remove personnel from the
     performance of the services/project, the Department will only exercise that power on reasonable
     grounds related to performance of the services/project.

17.4 Clearance of resources and material
     While it is not compulsory to obtain advance clearance of advertising or promotional materials using
     the Youth Attainment and Transitions and Youth Connections branding, providers should adhere to
     the branding protocols contained in the Style Guide.

      The Department recommends that Providers work closely with their contract manager on the
      development of promotional materials to ensure a consistent and professional image for the
      program and services.

      All resources and materials developed by Providers must be available to Departmental staff during
      monitoring visits. Providers can, at any time, request feedback from the Department for any
      resources and materials they develop.




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18. List of Useful Acronyms

     ABN          Australian Business Number
     AFP          Australian Federal Police
     ALF          Alternative Learning Facility
     AQF          Australian Quality Framework
     ASbA         Australian School-based Apprenticeship
     ATO          Australian Taxation Office
     ASA          Australian Auditing Standard
     CA           Chartered Accountant
     CPA          Certified Practising Accountant
     DEEWR        Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations
     FOI          Freedom Of Information
     GST          Goods And Services Tax
     GTO          Group Training Organisation
     IPP          Information Privacy Principle
     ISP          Internet Service Provider
     KPM          Key Performance Measure
     MCEECDYA     Ministerial Council For Education, Early Childhood Development and Youth Affairs
     MCTEE        Ministerial Council for Tertiary Education and Employment
     NPM          National Program Measures
     PMM          Performance Monitoring Meeting
     RTO          Registered Training Organisation
     SBCPB        Schools Business Community Partnership Brokers (Partnership Brokers)
     SES          Socio Economic Status
     TAFE         Technical and Further Education
     TTC          Trade Training Centre
     VET          Vocational Education and Training
     VETiS        Vocational Education and Training in Schools
     YATMIS       Youth Attainment and Transitions Management Information System




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19. Glossary

Alternative Learning      For the purposes of the Youth Connections program, an ALF is a facility that
Facility (ALF)            offers accredited and non-accredited education and/or training to young
                          people. Learning delivered through this facility is usually tailored to the
                          individual needs of the young person and is delivered in a supportive,
                          flexible, environment.

Australian                AACs are contracted by the Australian Government to promote
Apprenticeships Centres   apprenticeships and to assist employers to engage an apprentice. They
(AACs)                    provide information, administration services and support to employers and
                          apprentices. AACs assist with the completion of Training Contracts and
                          provide advice to the parties on the options available for selection of
                          apprenticeships and Registered Training Providers. They assess, approve and
                          process payment of Australian Government Apprenticeships Incentives to
                          eligible employers and Personal Benefits to eligible apprentices, as well as
                          carry out a monitoring support service to the employers and apprentices.

Australian School-based   ASbA refers to a program that combines paid employment and school studies
Apprenticeship (ASbA)     while the student is still enrolled in the senior years of secondary school. The
                          school or education provider at which the student is enrolled must
                          acknowledge and endorse the Training Plan/Outline required by the
                          Apprenticeship/Traineeship Training Contract. An ASbA is recognised on the
                          student’s senior secondary certificate.

Consortium                Consortium arrangements typically involve a number of separate legal
arrangements              entities joining together for the purpose of a joint enterprise. One of the
                          organisations must act as the ‘lead organisation’ for the consortium in order
                          to enter into a contract with the Commonwealth. The lead organisation must
                          be able to legally bind the other organisations in the consortium to comply
                          with the terms and conditions of the contract with the Commonwealth. The
                          other organisations in the consortium must also declare to the
                          Commonwealth that they agree to be legally bound under the contractual
                          arrangement.

Enrolment period          The period between the participant being enrolled into Youth Connections
                          and exiting the program.

Group Training            GTOs have been set up to employ apprentices and trainees under an
Organisations (GTOs)      Apprenticeship/Traineeship Training Contract and place them with host
                          employers. GTOs undertake employer responsibilities for the quality and
                          continuity of apprentices' and trainees' employment and training. GTOs also
                          manage the additional care and support necessary to achieve the successful
                          completion of an Apprenticeship/Traineeship Training Contract.
Job Services Australia    JSA is a national network of private and community organisations for
(JSA)                     unemployed people, particularly the long term unemployed, funded by the
                          Australian Government.

Locally based             For the purposes of these Guidelines, locally based organisations are defined
                          as organisations that maintain business premises within the Service Region,
                          and employ personnel who operate from premises within the Service Region
                          to deliver Youth Connections services required under the Services Contract
                          within that region.
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Low Socio Economic       Low SES regions are Low SES National Partnership regions that were
Status (SES) Regions     determined eligible for additional funding to support innovative local
                         initiatives. These initiatives are designed to improve education and transition
                         outcomes for young people from these regions.

Outcome                  An outcome is an agreed result or achievement (see the Youth Connections
                         Outcomes Framework and Evaluation Strategy at Appendix 1).

Outreach activities      Youth focussed activities conducted by the Provider and delivered in the
                         community with the primary aim of finding, connecting with and engaging
                         severely disengaged young people.

Partnership              A formal association or affiliation with another organisation or stakeholder.

Re-engagement            Youth focused activities conducted by the Provider which are designed to
activities               assist young people at risk to address personal barriers, and develop
                         resilience, self-efficacy and social skills to assist them to re-engage with
                         education and/or further training, and create avenues for them to access the
                         Individual Support Services offered through Youth Connections.

Registered Training      RTOs are authorised training providers that meet all nationally recognised
Organisations (RTOs)     standards of quality and deliver nationally recognised training and
                         qualifications.

Relationship             Informal association or affiliation with another organisation or stakeholder.

School Business          Partnership Brokers bring parties together to form a sustainable partnership
Community                with shared goals. The brokerage role may require different levels of support
Partnerships Brokers     from the Partnership Brokers depending on the parties involved and the
(Partnership Brokers)    maturity of the partnership. Brokering partnerships may involve, but is not
                         limited to, organising forums for potential partners to meet, monitoring
                         relationships, providing advice and support when required and facilitating
                         meetings. The Partnership Brokers will facilitate the development of sound
                         partnership foundations and to build the capacity of partners to manage
                         their relationship.

Subcontracting           Subcontracting is an arrangement where the Youth Connections provider
                         engages a person or organisation to deliver any part of the services that the
                         Provider is legally bound to deliver under their Services Contract with the
                         Commonwealth, where such a person or organisation is a separate legal
                         entity to the Youth Connections provider, and is not engaged as an employee
                         of the Provider.

Trade Training Centres   TTCs help increase the proportion of students achieving Year 12 or an
(TTCs)                   equivalent qualification and help address skill shortages in traditional trades
                         and emerging industries. Schools apply for funding to build new, or upgrade
                         existing trade or vocational education and training facilities.




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VET in Schools (VETiS)    VETiS is a program of study undertaken by school students as part of the
                          senior years of secondary school that provides credit towards a nationally
                          recognised VET qualification within the Australian Qualifications Framework.
                          Students receive training in specific industry competency standards and this
                          training is delivered by a Registered Training Organisation or a school in
                          partnership with a Registered Training Organisation.

Vocational Learning       Vocational Learning is general learning that has a vocational perspective. It
                          includes elements such as generic employability skills, enterprise education,
                          career education and community and work based learning.

Year 12 or equivalent     Year 12 or equivalent attainment means having been awarded or completed
Attainment                the requirements for being awarded:
                              a Year 12 Certificate (Senior Secondary Certificate) by a Board of
                                Studies, or
                              an equivalent qualification such as the Certificate of General Education
                                for Adults (at Certificate II level or above), or
                              the International Baccalaureate or other higher education pre-entry
                                courses, or
                              an Australian Qualification Framework (AQF) Certificate II or higher
                                qualification issued by a Registered Training Organisation or by a
                                higher education institution.

Youth Attainment and      YATMIS is a relationship management and online reporting tool developed by
Transitions               the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations. YATMIS
Management                supports the management of the Youth Connections program and the work
Information System        of Youth Connections providers. Information entered onto YATMIS is used to
(YATMIS)                  monitor the performance of Youth Connections providers and report on
                          program achievements.

Youth Attainment and      The Youth Attainment and Transitions Service Region (Service Region) defines
Transitions Service       the communities a Youth Connections provider is contracted to service. Each
Region (Service Region)   Service Region is also serviced by a School Business Community Partnership
                          Broker.

Youth Connections         The Youth Connections Outcomes Framework and Evaluation Strategy states
Outcomes Framework        the overarching principles of the outcomes to be achieved through the Youth
and Evaluation Strategy   Connections program. See Appendix 1.

Youth Connections         A National Network of Youth Connections representatives nominated by each
National Network          of the State/Territory Youth Connections Networks.

Youth Connections         A Youth Connections provider is the Contracted Agency who has entered into
provider                  a contract with the Commonwealth to deliver the Youth Connections
                          program according to the terms and conditions of the Services Contract. This
                          may consist of a sole agency or a lead agency and consortium partners.
                          Youth Connections providers may purchase services from other organisations
                          through subcontracting arrangements.

Youth Connections         A network consisting of representatives from all Youth Connections providers
State/Territory Network   within a State/Territory.


                                                                                                      74
                                                                                        Attachment A
                        State and Territory Specific Requirements

Australian Capital Territory – Specific Requirements

1. Youth Connections Services
In the Australian Capital Territory (ACT), Youth Connections must be delivered according to the
following:

Connection Level One: for young people attached to school /education but at risk of disengaging
Youth Connections providers must assist young people at school who are most at risk of disengaging,
when they have been referred to the Youth Connections provider by the school. If a young person
eligible for this type of service is directly referred to Youth Connections by a parent or other source,
the Youth Connections provider must liaise with the local school to determine who will assist that
young person. Where young people attending non-government schools are referred to Youth
Connections, the Provider must liaise with the school directly.

In the ACT, 15 per cent of the service fees for Youth Connections must be directed towards
Connection Level One services.

Connection Level Two: For young people who are disconnecting or who are severely disconnected
from school /education
In respect of Connection Level Two service, Youth Connections providers must assist young people
who:
    are in school, but are at imminent risk of disconnecting
    have recently disconnected from school or other education environment
    are severely disconnected from school, education, family and community.


In the ACT, Youth Connections Providers must deliver Connection Level Two services as described in
the main body of the Guidelines. It is anticipated that 65 per cent of effort will be directed to those
young people who are within the Connection Level Two category, although this may vary depending
on local need. The figure must be agreed between the Provider, the ACT Government and the
Australian Government and included in the Provider’s Service Plan each year.

In the ACT, Youth Connections providers must ensure that they are aware of the locations of Youth
Services Programs and other existing alternative education programs. If alternative education
services do exist, the Youth Connections Provider must not duplicate these services and must show
they have linkages to these facilities, where appropriate.

In the ACT, 65 per cent of the payment structure must be directed towards Connection Level Two
services.

Outreach and Re-engagement Activities
In the ACT, Youth Connections Providers must deliver these services as described in the body of the
Guidelines.

In the ACT, 13 per cent of the payment structure must be directed towards Outreach and Re-
engagement Activities services.


                                                                                                     75
Strengthening Services in the Region Activities
In the ACT, Youth Connections Providers must deliver these services as described in the body of the
Guidelines.

In working to strengthen services in the ACT region, Youth Connections Providers must also work
with the Youth Services Program funded by Community Services Directorate.

In the ACT, 7 per cent of the payment structure must be directed towards Strengthening Services in
the Region services.

2. Eligible young people
In the ACT, Youth Connections must service young people aged 12-18. Youth Connections Providers
have the flexibility to offer services outside of this age range. If more than 10% of a Provider’s
enrolled caseload (active and suspended) falls outside of this age range at any point in time, they
must seek a waiver from DEEWR.

3. Stakeholders Youth Connections Providers must work with
In the ACT, Youth Connections Providers must have effective and collaborative working relationships
with:
    Youth Directorate and Care and Protection programs
    Education and Training Directorate programs
    Youth Coalition of the ACT.




                                                                                                  76
New South Wales – Specific Requirements (Part A)


1. Youth Connections Services
In New South Wales (NSW), Youth Connections providers must liaise with other support agencies
operating providing support to young people, particularly schools and TAFE colleges, other
government agencies, non-government organisations and existing alternative learning options.
Youth Connections providers must not duplicate these services and must show they have linkages to
these agencies and facilities, where appropriate. Clear referral arrangements and coordination of
services will be crucial to effective local service delivery.

Connection Level One: for young people attached to school /education but at risk of disengaging
In NSW, Youth Connections providers will deliver these services as described in the body of the
Guidelines.

Connection Level Two Service Delivery: For young people who are disconnecting or who are
severely disconnected from school /education
In NSW, Youth Connections providers will deliver these services as described in the body of the
Guidelines, but must ensure that they provide assistance to students who may become disengaged
because of special learning problems.

Providers who offer an alternative education program for students of compulsory school age who
are disconnected from school, should seek to have that program recognised by the NSW Board of
Studies as a Board Endorsed Alternative Education Program. See the Guidelines for Equivalent and
Alternative Courses of Study, pages 10-13 at the Board’s website address:
http://www.boardofstudies.nsw.edu.au/manuals/equivalent-alternative-study.html

Outreach and Re-engagement Activities
In NSW, Youth Connections providers will deliver these services as described in the body of the
Guidelines.

Strengthening Services in the Region Activities
In NSW, Youth Connections providers will deliver these services as described in the body of the
Guidelines.

2. Eligible young people
In NSW, the priority of Youth Connections Services will be to young people aged 11-19. Youth
Connections Providers will have the flexibility to offer services outside of this age range. If more
than 10% of a Provider’s enrolled caseload (active and suspended) falls outside of this age range at
any point in time, they must seek a waiver from DEEWR.

3. Stakeholders Youth Connections providers will work with
In working to strengthen services in regions in NSW, Youth Connections providers must also work
with:
    Links to Learning programs
    School Counsellors
    Staff supporting refugee students, e.g. Transition advisers, ESL teachers
    Schools as Community Centres
    School to Work programs

                                                                                                   77
    Independent Employment Adviser service providers
    Pastoral programs run by schools
    The Better Futures programs and projects for young people coordinated and managed by the
     regional offices of the NSW Department of Community Services
    The programs run by Youth off the Streets (Y.O.T.S.), Juvenile Detention Centres, Police and
     Citizens Youth Clubs, Smith Family and other non government organisations
    Aboriginal Education Consultative Group Inc (AECG)
    NSW Aboriginal Land Council and Local Aboriginal Lands Councils
    Aboriginal Medical Centres
    Department of Education and Communities (regional delegates)
    Government and non government organisations supporting refugee students and families
    Migrant resource centres.

Support for Indigenous young people
In Service Regions for which minimum Indigenous targets are set, as outlined in Provider’s Contract
and Service Plan, Youth Connections providers must deliver services to Indigenous communities in a
culturally appropriate manner, including the development of support materials which are culturally
specific. You must:
          a) Employ at least one Indigenous case worker (within 12 months of commencement of
              the contract period) whose role is to work with Indigenous young people;
          b) Ensure that all of Your staff complete Indigenous cultural awareness training; and
          c) Develop and implement an Indigenous engagement strategy for the Service Region.

In Service Regions for which an Indigenous Flag is allocated, as outlined in Provider’s Contract and
Service Plan, Youth Connections providers must:
         a) Ensure that all of Your staff complete Indigenous cultural awareness training; and
         b) Develop and implement an Indigenous engagement strategy for the Service Region.

Support for young humanitarian refugees
In Service Regions for which minimum humanitarian refugee targets are set, as outlined in provider’s
Contract and Service Plan, Youth Connections providers must deliver services to humanitarian
refugee communities in a culturally appropriate manner, including the development of support
materials which are culturally specific and appropriate. You must:
         a) Employ at least one case worker (within 12 months of commencement of the contract
            period) who is accepted by the majority of the humanitarian refugee country profile
            community within their Service Region to work with young people;
         b) Ensure that all of Your staff complete cultural awareness training; and
         c) Develop and implement a humanitarian refugee engagement strategy within the
            Service Region.
In Service Regions for which an humanitarian refugee Flag is allocated, as outlined in Provider’s
Contract and Service Plan, Youth Connections providers must:
         a) Ensure that all of Your staff complete cultural awareness training; and
         b) Develop and implement a humanitarian refugee engagement strategy within the
            Service Region.


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4. NSW Schools by Service Region
A list with an indicative mapping of NSW schools to Service Regions can be found at Appendix 2 of
the Guidelines.


Northern Territory – Specific Requirements

1. Youth Connections Services
In the Northern Territory, Youth Connections providers must deliver services in accordance with the
following:


    Youth Connections services delivered must be complementary to existing services for at risk
     young people in the service region.
    Youth Connections providers must link young people with existing specialist support services,
     where they are available and when it is appropriate.
    Remote Youth Connections service delivery is required to be concentrated in the 20 Working
     Future Territory Growth Towns, outlined in the NT Government Working Future Initiative,
     while also being available to eligible young people in remote locations and urban areas.

Connection Level One: for young people attached to school /education but at risk of disengaging
In the Northern Territory, Youth Connections providers must deliver these services as described in
the body of the Guidelines.

Youth Connection providers must also work with NT Department of Education and Training to assist
young people who leave school and who are considered at risk of not maintaining their participation
obligations to age 17 (i.e. those who take up an eligible option of employment, training or a
combination thereof).

Connection Level Two Service Delivery: For young people who are disconnecting or who are
severely disconnected from school /education
In the Northern Territory, Youth Connections providers must deliver these services as described in
the body of the Guidelines.

In the Northern Territory, Youth Connections providers must ensure that they are aware of the
locations of other Territory programs and existing alternative education facilities. In instances where
alternative education does exist in a region, the Youth Connections provider must not duplicate
these services and must show they have linkages to these facilities, where appropriate.

Outreach and Re-engagement Activities
In the Northern Territory, Youth Connections providers must deliver these services as described in
the body of the Guidelines.

Strengthening Services in the Region Activities
In the Northern Territory, Youth Connections providers must deliver these services as described in
the body of the Guidelines.

In the Northern Territory, Youth Connections providers must link with existing complementary
services, if available in the service region. This includes (but is not limited to) the following:
    Substance Misuse Programs

                                                                                                     79
 Child Protection Services
 Health Services
 Mental Health Services
 Disability Services
 Supported Accommodation Assistance Program
 Out-of home Care
 Remote Aboriginal Family and Community Workers
 Safe Places
 Northern Territory Government Department of Education and Training

Providers will need to establish links with relevant agencies, including the Departments of Health
and Children and Families, to ensure they have a comprehensive understanding of available
services and so they can tailor their services and support accordingly.

2. Eligible young people and Target age group
In the Northern Territory, eligible young people should be able to access Youth Connections
according to their level of need.

Youth Connections services must target young people aged 12-19. Youth Connections providers
will have the flexibility to offer services outside this age range, for young people requiring support
on a case-by-case basis.

For example, there may be circumstances where the needs of young people in a region require
Youth Connections providers to broaden their focus and provide support to other groups within
the region. These groups may include but are not limited to:
 younger people who have disengaged from school;
 younger or older indigenous people;
 young mothers who need support to remain engaged or to re-engage in education.

If more than 10% of a Provider’s enrolled caseload (active and suspended) falls outside of this age
range at any point in time, they must seek a waiver from DEEWR.

3. Stakeholders Youth Connections Providers will work with
In the Northern Territory, Youth Connections providers must have effective and collaborative
working relationships with the stakeholders, as described, and in particular with the Northern
Territory Government Department of Education and Training and the Departments of Health and
Children and Families, to ensure a comprehensive understanding of available services.




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Queensland – Specific Requirements

1. Youth Connections Services (Section 1.2 of the RFT)
In Queensland, the Youth Connections Services must be delivered according to the following:

Connection Level One: for young people attached to school /education but at risk of disengaging
Young people who are still engaged in education will not be the focus of service delivery in
Queensland. In Queensland, schools and schooling sectors will primarily work with young people in
school who are most at risk of disengaging. The Youth Connections provider must establish and
maintain relationships with Youth Support Coordinators (YSCs) and regional Youth Support
Coordinators and work in ways that ensure gaps in support services are addressed and efforts are
aligned to avoid duplications.

The majority of the work of the Youth Support Coordinators (YSCs) is with young people in schools or
TAFEs. It is not, however, expected that Youth Support Coordinators will be able to deliver a service
to every school and TAFE.

Instead, priority clients and issues will be determined by the DET Regional Director through a
collaborative process and may include young people at risk of disengaging from education who are:
    homeless or at risk of homelessness
    on a youth justice order
    on a child protection order
    of Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander background
    from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds such as refugees and/or humanitarian
     entrants
    pregnant and/or parenting.


Regional Youth Support Coordinators
These positions provide advice on prioritisation for YSCI services in regions in addition to providing
front-line service delivery to young people at risk of disengaging from education or not making
strong transitions to training or employment. This direct service delivery focus maintains the
Regional YSC connection to what is happening on the ground and informs advice on prioritisation
provided to the Regional Director.

In addition, the Regional YSC works to strengthen relationships and coordination with other service
providers, most notably the Australian Youth Connections program.

The Youth Connections provider must also work with the YSCs to develop a referral process to
continue to assist young people who leave school and who are still considered the most at risk of not
maintaining their education participation obligations to age 17 (i.e. those that take up an approved
option/exempt activity e.g. employment skills development programs, part-time work).

This collaboration will be particularly important during the first year of the program to ensure that,
as services are streamlined in the region, each young person has continuous support.




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Connection Level Two: For young people who are disconnecting or who are severely disconnected
from school /education
In order to complement the existing initiatives and programs, Youth Connections must focus on
supporting young people who have disengaged from education. This means that Youth Connections
providers in Queensland must focus on servicing young people in Connection Level 2b: for young
people disconnected from school /education (for 3 or more months). It is expected that these young
people would not have attended school for at least 3 months, have highly complex personal
situations and have no discernable plans to complete Year 12 or an equivalent.

As a second priority, providers must focus on young people in Connection Level 2a who have
recently disengaged from school (within the last 3 months). These young people may have high
levels of non-attendance or suspension from school and/or minimal engagement or participation in
other social and community activities.

Outreach and Re-engagement Activities
In Queensland, Youth Connections providers must deliver these services as described in the body of
the Guidelines.

A key role for the Youth Connections provider in each region is to work with the Queensland
Department of Education and Training and schooling sectors, to locate and re-engage young people
that have disengaged from education and/or training. This will include using non-participation
reports that identify young people in the compulsory participation phase who appear not to be
enrolled in full-time education and training options for a period of three months or longer. Youth
Connections providers must follow up with young people and seek to engage them in education and
training to attain a Year 12 or equivalent qualification.

The Youth Connections provider must use these reports to identify young people who have
disengaged from education, and work closely with Youth Support Coordinator and education and
training providers to make contact with young people and re-engage them in education, training or
employment programs.

The Youth Connections provider must also analyse the reports to advise the education and training
sectors, DEEWR and Queensland DET on disengagement trends and contributing factors.
To fulfil this role, the Youth Connection provider must work closely with Queensland DET officials.

Strengthening Services in the Region Activities
In Queensland, Youth Connections providers must deliver these services as described in the body of
the Guidelines. In working to strengthen services in regions in Queensland, Youth Connections
providers must also work closely with:
    Youth Support Coordinators (YSC)
    Regional Youth Support Coordinators (Regional YSCs)
    Get Set For Work (GSFW) providers
    Regional Queensland DET staff.

2. Eligible young people
In Queensland, Youth Connections Services must focus primarily on young people aged 14-18, who
have disengaged from education and are not in full-time employment. Youth Connections providers
will have the flexibility to offer services outside this age range. If more than 10% of a Provider’s
enrolled caseload (active and suspended) falls outside of this age range at any point in time, they

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must seek a waiver from DEEWR for each additional young person they wish to service outside of
the targeted age range (who will liaise with DET when considering the request).

There may be circumstances where the needs of young people in a region require Youth
Connections providers to broaden their focus and provide support to other groups within the region.
These groups may include, but are not limited to:
    older youth to support the Youth Compact if required
    younger people who have disengaged from school
    younger Indigenous people
    young mothers who need support to remain engaged in education
    young people who do not make a successful transition from school to further education and
     training or employment.

3. Stakeholders Youth Connections providers must work with
In working to strengthen services in regions in Queensland, Youth Connections providers must also
work closely with:


    Youth Support Coordinators (YSC)
    Regional Youth Support Coordinators (Regional YSCs)
    Get Set For Work (GSFW) providers
    Regional Queensland DET staff.




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South Australia – Specific Requirements (Part A)

                                YOUTH CONNECTIONS – GENERAL

1. Overview

The model for Youth Connections (YC) in South Australia will deliver coordinated Commonwealth
and State services to maximise the benefits of Commonwealth funding and provide optimal services
for the most at risk young people in all school sectors. Youth Connections providers will work
collaboratively with other providers in the region to offer customised services designed around the
individual needs of the most at-risk young people and tailored to existing services in each region.

From the beginning of 2012, the South Australian Department of Education and Children’s Services’
Innovative Community Action Networks (ICAN) will be fully operational in all areas of the state (with
the exception of the Anangu Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara Lands).

ICANs use a partnership and local support approach to develop ways to reshape learning pathways
for young people who are most at risk of not completing Year 12. Youth Connections providers will
be able to partner with ICAN (and Flexible Learning Options (FLO) enrolled students) in particular
circumstances, to ensure adequate provision of case management services (Youth Connections) as
well as access to flexible learning (through ICAN/FLO). They will not duplicate the services provided
by ICANs.

In all regions, the Youth Connections provider will focus on severely disengaged young people,
although it is anticipated that they will also offer some services to the most at-risk young people
who are still in school or an approved learning program where necessary.

It is expected that where an ICAN (FLO) student is enrolled through the Australian pilot for
notschool.com, the local Youth Connections provider will provide individual case management
services, if required, for that student. ICAN (FLO enrolled) students participating in the notschool
program do not have an allocated case manager, but in many cases will need case management
support. There will be 50 notschool enrolments across the state in 2012.

Providers must note that young people aged under 17 years are subject to the South Australian
Education Act 1972 and that duty of care obligations are placed upon staff in a young person’s
school of enrolment. There is a commensurate obligation for providers of programs outside school,
to supply information about attendance, participation and learning programs to the school of
enrolment (refer to whole of government Information Sharing Guidelines for promoting the health,
safety and wellbeing of young people, which can be viewed at
www.decs.sa.gov.au/docs/documents/1/InformationSharingGuideli.pdf).

2. Youth Connections Services

In South Australia, Youth Connections providers will offer the following services to eligible young
people. It is anticipated that Youth Connections providers in South Australia will primarily be
offering Connection Level Two services.

Connection Level One: for young people attached to school /education but at risk of disengaging

In South Australia, Youth Connections providers will have limited activity offering services to young
people who are still at school and who are most at risk of disengaging. Schools will have a greater
responsibility in providing services to young people who require this type of service.
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In particular, the ICAN has primary responsibility in offering Services to young people attached to
school /education but at risk of disengaging. Youth Connections providers in these regions must
work with their ICAN to ensure that there is no duplication of services. Youth Connections providers
will have capacity to, in consultation with the ICAN, offer Connection Level One Service, in order to
give greater support to young people in school.

Connection Level Two: For young people who are disconnecting or who are severely disconnected
from school /education

In South Australia, Youth Connections providers will primarily be offering Connection Level Two
services to young people who have recently disengaged from school or other education
environments or who are severely disengaged from school, education, family and community. Youth
Connections providers will coordinate with ICAN services to provide extra case management and
flexible learning options to eligible young people in the region. These students may have disengaged
from school and may not (in that year) be eligible for a school FLO enrolment.

Youth Connections providers can offer services to ICAN students where necessary and in
consultation with the ICANs; and ICANs can refer young people to the Youth Connections provider in
instances where the Youth Connections service is more appropriate than the ICAN service, or if the
Youth Connections provider can offer services that are not available through the ICAN. It is
anticipated that most Youth Connections providers will offer alternative learning pathways, usually
through an approved learning program.

Outreach and Re-engagement Activities

Youth Connections providers in South Australia will be expected to offer some Outreach and Re-
engagement Activities.

Strengthening Services in the Region Activities

While the ICAN will have primary responsibility for strengthening services in the region with the
assistance of the Partnership Broker, Youth Connections providers may have a role in assisting the
Partnership Broker to establish and maintain regional advisory bodies where necessary and are
expected to work closely with the ICAN. Any regional advisory body established would be
responsible for developing stronger links between education providers, local business and industry.
The Partnership Broker will assess whether or not there is a need for this service in the region.

3. Indicative Outcome Range

The indicative outcome range will be driven by the needs of the Service Region and changing
regional priorities, so may vary over the period of the Contract. The Youth Connections provider will
be consulted regarding any changes to the indicative outcome range. Youth Connections providers
will not be expected to alter their indicative outcome range unreasonably. Any changes in range
must be approved by the Department in consultation with relevant South Australian State
Government agencies.

4. Eligible young people

Youth Connections providers will have some flexibility to offer services to young people outside the
specified age range, however, if more than 10% of a provider’s enrolled caseload (active and


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suspended) falls outside this age range they must submit a waiver application to the Department for
each additional young person outside the specified age range they wish to enrol.

5. Youth Connections providers will work with stakeholders

In South Australia, Youth Connections providers must have effective and collaborative working
relationships with all relevant stakeholders, including the Department, State Government agencies,
the non-Government schooling sector, schools, education and training providers, local service
organisations, parents, families and the local community. Youth Connections providers will also
develop a working relationship with the Youth Connections Specialised Services provider in order to
support young people who are at risk of entering, who are in, or exiting the South Australian Juvenile
Justice system (as appropriate) to ensure ongoing support is provided to the young person.

6. Definition of Case Management

Case management, as it applies to Youth Connection providers in South Australia, is the collaborative
process of assessing, planning, facilitating and advocating for options and services to meet an
individual young person’s social and emotional wellbeing, and learning and transition needs, through
communication and engaging available resources to promote quality cost effective outcomes. Youth
Connections Case Managers have responsibility for assessing a young person’s needs and for
developing and maintaining a Re-engagement Plan, in conjunction with the young person, to
coordinate services to meet the young person’s needs. Based on a youth development approach,
Youth Connections Case Managers build on the strengths of young people through a coordinated,
progressive series of activities and experiences to support them in working towards positive and
sustainable outcomes. Case Managers are also required to review the Re-engagement Plan on a
regular basis to ensure that it is meeting the young person’s identified needs.




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South Australia – Specific Requirements (Part B)

                        YOUTH CONNECTIONS – SPECIALISED SERVICES


1. Overview of the Specialised Services Model

As part of the State specific arrangements in South Australia a provider organisation will deliver a
Youth Connections - Specialised Services program. This program links with the South Australian
Juvenile Justice system and offers services to young people from across the whole State who are in
or exiting the system, or who are at imminent risk of entering the system.

The Youth Connections – Specialised Services provider will provide Youth Connections services to
young people who meet the eligibility criteria across South Australia for Youth Connections –
Specialised Services. If the young person engages with or exits the South Australian Juvenile Justice
system to a metropolitan, regional or remote location that does not provide easy access to the
Youth Connections – Specialised Service provider’s facility, the Youth Connections – Specialised
Services provider will liaise with the mainstream Youth Connections provider in the appropriate
Service Region to ensure ongoing support is provided to the young person.

Youth Connections – Specialised Service delivery will be targeted to help the young person re-
engage with education and/or further training through the provision of individualised case
management to overcome personal barriers. This may be delivered through one-on-one assistance,
group assistance, mentoring, advocacy and/or referrals to external support or specialist services.

Service delivery may also be extended to assist young people who are not yet engaged in the
Juvenile Justice system, but who are deemed to be at imminent risk of engaging with the South
Australian Juvenile Justice System.

The Youth Connections - Specialised Services provider will offer the following services:
    Flexible and tailored case management to young people who are severely disengaged and
     who are in or who are exiting the Juvenile Justice system in South Australia
    Flexible and tailored case management to young people who are severely disengaged and
     who are at imminent risk of entering the Juvenile Justice system in South Australia
    Youth focused activities for young people with the purpose of engaging severely disengaged
     young people who are in or exiting the Juvenile Justice system in South Australia, or who are
     at imminent risk of entering the Juvenile Justice system in South Australia
    Assist education providers and other organisations across South Australia to strengthen their
     services and build their own capacity to work with young people who are at imminent risk of
     entering, or who are exiting the Juvenile Justice System in South Australia.

Young people must receive the most appropriate available service, and it is expected that all Youth
Connections providers will tailor assistance to the needs of each at-risk young person, including
those at imminent risk of entering, who are in or exiting the South Australian Juvenile Justice
System. In some instances, this could involve referring the young person to another more
appropriate program or provider, including the Youth Connections - Specialised Services provider.

By way of example, the Youth Connections – Specialised Services provider may provide education,
case management, mental health support and anger management training on site to a young person

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who is currently in the Juvenile Justice system, then assist the young person to make a supported
transition to a mainstream Youth Connections provider in another region, so that the young person
continues to receive support when they leave the Juvenile Justice facility and move to a different
region in South Australia where they may not be able to access the direct and intensive support of
the Specialised Services provider.

2. Youth Connections – Specialised Services program - Service Delivery

The Youth Connections – Specialised Services program service delivery is comprised of the following
elements of mainstream Youth Connections program services which are outlined in the main body of
these Guidelines:
    Individual Support Services - Connection Level 2b: for young people disconnected from school
     /education (for 3 or more months)
    Outreach and Re-engagement Activities
    Strengthening Services in the Region Activities


Connection Level Two (b): for young people disconnected from school /education (for 3 or more
months)

In Connection Level Two (b) Services, the Youth Connections - Specialised Services provider will
assist young people who:
    Are severely disengaged from school, education, family and/or community and who are in or
     exiting the Juvenile Justice System in South Australia; or
    Are severely disengaged from school, education, family and/or community and are at
     imminent risk of entering the Juvenile Justice System in South Australia.

Services offered to these young people will be characterised by:
    Flexible and individualised case management, which will address barriers to participation in
     education or training leading to attainment of Year 12 or its equivalent faced by the young
     person
    Individual and group activities designed to assist re-engagement
    Development of a Re-engagement Plan with the young person
    Services tailored to the needs of the individual, with the Re-engagement Plan focusing on
     appropriate outcomes around attainment of Year 12 or its equivalent for the young person
    Ongoing support through regular contact with the young person, including service provision
     for a period of 6 months after a final outcome has been achieved to ensure appropriate
     referrals are made for long term assistance to the young person and for a seamless
     continuation of support and service provision.
    Linking with appropriate services in the region, which may include referring the young person
     to another service
    Advocacy services with, and on behalf of, the young person.

An overarching objective of Youth Connections is to support the young person to attain Year 10 (if
not already attained) and then Year 12 or equivalent qualifications, or participate in accredited and

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non-accredited training that would be considered stepping stones to achieving Year 12 or equivalent
attainment.

Young people receiving Connection Level Two (b) services will need long term and intensive
intervention within a supportive and accommodating environment. The provider has the flexibility
to allocate their resources recognising that some young people will require less intervention to
achieve outcomes than others.

Alternative Learning Facility
The Youth Connections – Specialised Services provider must ensure they can provide access to
education or training for at risk young people through an alternative learning facility. The
Department recognises that young people accessing the Youth Connections- Specialised Services
alternative learning facility may not be suitable for mainstream education programs. The Youth
Connections – Specialised Services provider must ensure that the programs and facilities offered
through the alternative learning facility meet the specific needs of this cohort of young people.

If possible this should be through an appropriate facility that already exists and can link with the
Juvenile Justice System or an existing facility already run by the provider. Where no appropriate
facility exists the provider should establish an alternative learning facility. If the provider establishes
their own alternative learning facility, it must be registered with the South Australia Government to
deliver accredited education. Alternative Learning Facilities should offer accredited and non-
accredited courses (such as literacy and numeracy training or short preparatory courses). Non
accredited courses should aim to develop the skills of young people to overcome barriers to
reengagement.

Outreach and Re-engagement Activities
In Outreach and Re-engagement Activities, the Youth Connections – Specialised Services provider
will offer proactive youth-focused activities and outreach services for young people in or exiting the
South Australian Juvenile Justice System and/or for young people at imminent risk of entering the
South Australian Juvenile Justice System. The Youth Connections – Specialised Services provider
should work with the Youth Connections provider contracted to the specific region for this service
delivery element to ensure relevant activities are delivered and there is no duplication of service
provision.

These activities should be relevant to the Service Region where services are being delivered and
should develop the young person’s ability to re-engage with the wider community.

The aim of these activities is to develop a relationship and trust with the young person and
encourage them to participate in the case managed services offered under Connection Level Two
(b).

Strengthening Services in the Region Activities
In Strengthening Services in the Region Activities, the Youth Connections – Specialised Services
provider will assist education providers and other organisations across South Australia to strengthen
their services and build their own capacity to work with young people who are at imminent risk of
entering, or who are exiting the Juvenile Justice System in South Australia.

By working through the mainstream Youth Connections providers, Partnership Brokers and relevant
State and Territory services in South Australia, the Youth Connections – Specialised Services provider
will build the capacity of education providers to work with young people in, exiting or who are at risk
of engaging with the South Australian Juvenile Justice system, including:
      Early identification
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       More effective interventions and support, which may include mentoring for this cohort of at
        risk young people
       Re-engagement strategies for this cohort of at risk young people returning to the learning
        environment
       Links to available services and support in a region.

The Youth Connections – Specialised Services provider will also:
     Build strong collaborative relationships with other providers of services to at risk young
       people in, exiting from or who are at risk of engaging with the South Australian Juvenile
       Justice system
     including other Australian Government providers, such as Centrelink and Job Services
       Australia, and relevant South Australian initiatives and programs
     Assist in developing, and participate in, a South Australian wide approach for working with
       young people in, exiting from or who are at risk of engaging with the South Australian
       Juvenile Justice system
     Identify and share best practice for working with at risk youth in, exiting from or who are at
       risk of engaging with the South Australian Juvenile Justice system

3. The Youth Connections – Specialised Service provider will work with Stakeholders

In providing Youth Connections – Specialised Services, the provider will be required to work closely
with, network with and accept referrals from a range of stakeholders including mainstream Youth
Connections providers and the Partnership Brokers. Other stakeholders and referral sources should
include:
    South Australian Juvenile Justice System
    South Australian Police Service
    Government and non-government schools
    Federal and South Australian State Government Agencies
    Other education providers, including TAFEs, Registered Training Organisations and providers
     of alternative education
    Job Services Australia provider, and providers of other Australian Government Services
    Centrelink
    Providers of State and Territory Government initiatives
    Other providers of services and support to young people in a region

4. Other elements of the Service Model

Refer to the Service Model for the delivery of mainstream Youth Connections in the main body of
these Guidelines for other elements of the Service Model, including:
    Participant Registration
    Assessment
    Re-engagement Plan
    Assistance Activities
    Participant Contacts

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    Enrolment Period
    Re-enrolling Participants
    Participant transfers
    Participant Surveys.

5. Eligibility Criteria for Youth Connections - Specialised Services

The Youth Connections – Specialised Services Program will be available to all eligible young people in
South Australia.

To be eligible, a young person must be:
    An Australian Citizen
      OR
    A permanent resident of Australia; including on a humanitarian visa (subclasses 200-204, 866
     and 851)
      AND
    Be aged between 10 and 19 years of age
      AND
    Identified as being in or exiting the Juvenile Justice system in South Australia; or
    Identified as being at imminent risk of entering the Juvenile Justice system in South Australia.

Waivers of Eligibility Requirements
The Youth Connections – Specialised Service provider will have flexibility to offer services outside of
this age range, however, if more than 10% of the provider’s enrolled caseload (active and
suspended) falls outside this range, an exemption must be sought from the Department. The
Department will consider on a case-by-case basis, exemptions to the eligibility requirements for
Youth Connections – Specialised Services.




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Tasmania – Specific Requirements

1. Youth Connections Services
In Tasmania, Youth Connections will be delivered according to the following.

    a) Business Rules and Protocols
       Providers must establish and document business rules and protocols in the Service Plan at
       both a regional and school level for:
    effective communication;
    determining responsibilities within the school environment;
    managing confidentiality; and
    reporting of educational outcomes.

   b) Connection Level One: for young people attached to school /education but at risk of
      disengaging
      Providers must deliver these services as described in the body of the Guidelines. However a
      focus of the effort for this cohort of young people must be on students in upper primary
      schools. Providers must partner with principals and classroom teachers to identify students
      most at risk of disengaging in this setting. When working with primary students, significant
      adults in the student’s life should be involved in the management.

   c) Connection Level Two: For young people who are disconnecting or who are severely
      disconnected from school /education
      These services will be delivered as described in the body of the Guidelines.

       To maximise outcomes and eliminate duplication of effort, providers must collaborate with
       all existing providers of supporting services within the Service Region for young people at-
       risk particularly Department of Education Learning Services Management Teams, the
       Tasmanian Polytechnic, the Tasmanian Academy, Independent schools and their association
       and Tasmanian Catholic Education Office.

       Young people who are provided with support through flexible learning will be encouraged to
       pursue a pathway which will re-connect them back into education and training
       opportunities.

       Where existing flexible education programs do exist in a region, providers must not duplicate
       these services and must show they have linkages to these, where appropriate. This will be
       done by consulting and collaborating at a regional level with education providers.

       A priority focus for Connection Level 2(b) services will be students identified through the
       Flexible Learning database which resides with Educational Performance Services (EPS) in the
       Department of Education.

   d) Outreach and Re-engagement Activities
      Providers must deliver these services as described in the body of the Guidelines.

   e) Strengthening Services in the Region Activities
      In working to strengthen services, providers must also work with government agencies
      supporting the individual.

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        To avoid duplication of services, providers must develop awareness of, and approaches to,
        current interagency and non-government organisation initiatives established with education
        providers.

2. Eligible young people and target age group

    a) Youth Connections services will be provided to young people aged 11-17. Providers have the
       flexibility to offer services outside of this age range. However, if more than 10% of a
       Provider’s enrolled caseload (active and suspended) falls outside of this age range at any
       point in time, they must seek a waiver from DEEWR.

    b) To identify eligible young people in the Service Region who would benefit from Youth
       Connections, providers must work closely with:
    Learning Service Management Teams;
    the Tasmanian Polytechnic;
    the Tasmanian Academy;
    Independent schools and their association; and
    the Tasmanian Catholic Education Office.

3. Collaboration with educational providers
Providers must establish and maintain effective and collaborative working relationships with
educational providers and organisations recommended by regional education providers.




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Victoria – Specific Requirements

Since Youth Connections providers were first contracted, a new Government has been elected in the
State of Victoria. The emerging priorities for the Victorian Government are outlined in the 2011
Victorian Families Statement1. Providers should make themselves aware of the relevant policies
contained within this Statement.

As part of its platform for reforming the education sectors, the Victorian Government is committed
to improving the system’s response to the needs of ‘hard to reach’ learners to ensure all young
people are participating in education or training, and attaining a qualification that will support their
transition into meaningful employment. In the 2011-2012 Victorian State Budget, the Government
has invested $1 million over three years to pilot and assess alternative models as part of its overhaul
of the alternative education system. Research conducted for the Department of Education and Early
Childhood Development has identified a lack of dedicated funding for students when they move to
alternative settings as a major barrier to accessing the level of support they need. Therefore, the
Victorian Government will ensure that funding for government school students moving from
mainstream to alternative school settings will follow the student, providing clear incentives for
schools to re-engage students in education and give students the best chance to get back on track.

The Victorian Government has also committed to the Youth Partnerships initiative, which will design
and test new ways for the education, youth and family support, justice, homelessness and mental
health sectors to work more collaboratively to support individual young people experiencing
problems. This initiative will support service providers to work together to ensure a greater focus on
early intervention, consistent approaches to assessment and referral of young people across these
sectors, and clear entry points into the right youth services, including tailored education options, at
the right time. For more information on the Youth Partnerships initiative, including the location of
demonstration sites, see:
http://www.education.vic.gov.au/sensecyouth/youthpartnerships/default.htm

Existing arrangements
The following provides an overview of existing arrangements for education and training provision
and youth transitions support in Victoria.

Qualifications and pathways
Education and training options available to students in the senior secondary years of schooling
include academic courses of study under the Victorian Certificate of Education (VCE) and the
International Baccalaureate, hands-on applied learning through the Victorian Certificate of Applied
Learning (VCAL) and nationally accredited vocational education and training (VET) that can be
undertaken as part of either the VCE or VCAL. School-based apprenticeships and traineeships are an
important pathway for students through VET in Schools, undertaken as part of a program of studies
that combine the VCE or VCAL with a nationally accredited training certificate and employment.
Students in these programs have the opportunity to undertake workplace learning and to develop
and enhance their employability skills. Within the VCE or VCAL, clusters of subjects that lead to
further training and employment in specific industries are being developed and promoted.

Delivery arrangements
There are a range of delivery arrangements which enable young people to take advantage of the
broad range of qualifications and subjects available. These include provision in schools, TAFE and
Adult Community Education (ACE). The Commonwealth has also provided funding for the Trade

1
    http://premier.vic.gov.au/our-commitment/

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Training Centres in Schools Program to build or upgrade trade training facilities to support delivery
of vocational education and training.

Transition support
The following programs and tools are available to assist in supporting student transitions:
     Managed Individual Pathways (MIPs) provide all 15-19 year olds attending Government
      schools with individual pathway plans and associated support to enable a successful transition
      through the post compulsory years to continued education, training or full-time employment.
      Additional funding from 2009 has enhanced provision to Indigenous students and allowed
      earlier intervention with this group (from Year 8).
     The Student Mapping Tool is a tool which employs a school’s data about its students to
      highlight factors which have been shown to increase the risk of student disengagement and
      early leaving, and maps the programs and initiatives being used. The data can be used to
      assess and plan for whole-school needs, and to monitor individual student progress, evaluate
      the efficacy of the interventions being used, and assists schools in reporting and student
      management.
     The Victorian Careers Curriculum Framework provides a scaffold for teachers, trainers, careers
      practitioners, team leaders, curriculum coordinators and school leaders to develop a localised
      and customised quality career development program for young people in schools, ACE and
      TAFE. The Framework indicates suitable links to existing curriculum to assist in the planning
      process of building an integrated program. For more information, see
      http://www.education.vic.gov.au/sensecyouth/carframe/default.htm
     The School Focussed Youth Service works to establish collaborative mechanisms between
      schools and agencies that support young people, and purchases service to fill gaps at the local
      level.

Accountability and Monitoring
     Successful student transitions and pathways is one of the three accountability outcomes
      expected of government schools in the School Accountability and Improvement Framework.
      Schools incorporate strategies to achieve successful pathways and transitions initiatives in
      their School Strategic Plans and Annual Implementation Plans.
     An annual On Track telephone survey of government and non-government school leavers
      maps their further education, training and employment destinations and provides
      comprehensive data to schools and other stakeholders. Support is provided through the On
      Track Connect program to young people not studying or in full time work who request
      additional pathway advice. These young people are referred to appropriate local service
      providers to help them get their career plans back on track.

Strengthening Partnerships
     31 Local Learning and Employment Networks (LLENs) were established in all areas of the State
      from 2001. LLENs develop partnerships between local education providers, industries and
      communities to improve education, training and employment outcomes of their local young
      people, with a focus on the most disadvantaged.2


2
 Since 2010, the LLENs have enhanced their existing networks and delivery against additional requirements of
the Commonwealth School Community Business Partnership Broker program.

                                                                                                          95
    Regional Youth Commitments in all Department of Education and Early Childhood
     Development Regions develop coordinated arrangements across the Region with all providers
     of education and training as well as agencies involved in career and transition support on
     behalf of young people 15 to 19 years.

2. Youth Connections Services

General requirements
Intake process
In Victoria, Youth Connections providers must establish a dedicated triage system, which will:
    assess the needs of the young person at time of referral
    assess the appropriateness of the referral for the Youth Connections service
    manage the entry of the young person into the service
    refer to an appropriate alternative or additional service as required (e.g. housing, alcohol and
     other drug counselling)
    collect data relating to referrals, community need and demand for the Youth Connections
     service.

Interactions with local partners
Youth Connections providers must demonstrate effective and collaborative working relationships
with relevant local partners including Local Learning and Employment Networks, School Networks
and Youth Partnerships demonstration projects where these exist.

Delivery
In the development of a re-engagement plan, the Youth Connections provider must build on existing
plans a young person may have developed, for example a Career Action plan (previously known as a
MIPs or pathway plan).

In Victoria there are significant and increasing numbers of young people without a senior secondary
certificate who are participating in the VET sector. The service offered by the Youth Connections
provider must cater to the specific needs of these young people. Support services for this group
must not simply be a replication of services aimed at school students or young people who want to
return to school.

Youth Connections providers must be responsive to the needs of all communities. Providers must
pay particular attention to Indigenous young people and young people from a refugee background in
service regions with an Indigenous or humanitarian flag (though providers in areas without a flag
should also be alert to the special needs of these groups in their areas). In flagged regions, staff
should have cultural competency and demonstrated experience in working with the relevant
communities. It is anticipated that providers in regions with an Indigenous flag must employ staff in
Identified Positions in accordance with Victoria’s Identified Position policy.


Connection Level One: for young people attached to school /education but at risk of disengaging
In relation to Connection Level One delivery, Youth Connections services in Victoria must ensure that
they are working collaboratively with schools and other education or training providers. Youth
Connections activities should complement the efforts of education and training providers and assist
in improving their capacity.

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In Victoria, schools carry the principal responsibility for maintaining engagement of their students,
and will remain the primary vehicle to cater for young people who are at risk of disengaging. Other
education and training providers in Victoria also have responsibilities to ensure successful outcomes
for their students, and are working to increase the completion of a senior secondary certificate or
accredited VET qualification at Certificate level II or higher and to improve support for young people
to complete their qualifications.

In Victoria, 5 per cent of the funding allocation for Youth Connections will be directed towards
Connection Level One services.

Connection Level Two: For young people who are disconnecting or who are severely disconnected
from school /education
In Victoria, Youth Connections providers must deliver Connection Level Two services as described in
the main body of the Guidelines, but with a focus on those young people who are severely
disconnected. Within the Connection Level Two category, it is anticipated that 75 per cent of effort
will be directed to those young people who are severely disconnected, although this may vary
depending on local need. The figure for each area is to be agreed between the provider, the State
and the Commonwealth and included in the Provider’s service plans.

Youth Connections providers must ensure that in delivering services to the Connection Level Two
cohort they are aware of existing responsibilities of schools and other education and training
providers, as noted in the previous section. They must also be familiar with relevant existing
Victorian programs, including major regional, network or school initiatives operating within the
service area that support young people’s transitions.

In providing services to those young people who have recently disconnected from education and
training, Youth Connections providers must ensure prompt action is taken to re-attach them to
maximise the likelihood of a successful outcome.

Providers must note that in Victoria they are not able to use Youth Connections funding for
registration and delivery of new alternative/flexible education programs. Where existing
alternative/flexible education programs exist, including existing programs run by interested
organisations that are registered providers, the Youth Connections Provider must link to these for
service provision. Where no such provision is available, Youth Connections providers must work with
the LLENs to develop partnerships with education and training providers who meet Victorian
registration and quality requirements to develop suitable programs, using funding available for
education and training provision provided by the Victorian Government. For more information, see
Section 5 of this document.

Youth Connections providers must deliver access for young people, where required, to qualified
careers counsellors to help support transition to long term sustainable education, training and
employment outcomes.

In Victoria, 70 per cent of the funding allocation will be directed towards Connection Level Two
services.

Outreach and Re-engagement Activities
In Victoria, Youth Connections providers must deliver Outreach and Re-engagement Activities
services as described in the body of the Guidelines. Providers in Victoria must ensure that in
delivering these services that they are aware of the Victorian context and consider network or
school initiatives currently in place to support this type of service. In particular they must focus on


                                                                                                          97
establishing strong collaboration with Partnership Brokers and supporting Regional Youth
Commitments, the Managed Individual Pathways program and the Youth Partnerships initiative.

In Victoria, 15 per cent of the funding allocation will be directed towards Outreach and Re-
engagement Activities services.


Strengthening Services in the Region Activities
In Victoria, Youth Connections Service providers must deliver Strengthening Services in the Region
services as described in the body of the Guidelines. In working to strengthen services in regions in
Victoria, Youth Connections providers must work within the Victorian context and consider network
or school initiatives currently in place to support this type of service. In particular they must focus on
establishing strong collaboration with Partnership Brokers and supporting Regional Youth
Commitments, Youth Partnerships and the Managed Individual Pathways program.

In Victoria, 10 per cent of the funding allocation will be directed towards Strengthening Services in
the Region services.

3. Eligibility (Section1.3.1 – 1.3.12 of the RFT)
In Victoria Youth Connections services must be provided to young people aged 13-19. Youth
Connections providers will have the flexibility to offer services outside of this age range where
required. However, if more than 10% of a Provider’s enrolled caseload (active and suspended) falls
outside of this age range at any point in time, they must seek an exemption from DEEWR.

4. Other
In Victoria, Youth Connections providers must conduct the On Track Connect program. On Track
Connect, as part of the Victorian Government On Track annual destinations survey, aims to assist
young people who have left school and are not studying or in full time work, by connecting them
with an appropriate pathway. On Track Connect occurs once each calendar year, immediately
following conduct of the survey, with approximately 2000 young people statewide requesting follow
up assistance in 2010. Responsibilities under On Track Connect include brokering appropriate
referral arrangements to provide advice to young people about options for reengagement with post
compulsory education, training or employment, and reporting outcomes back to DEECD. Detailed
guidelines for completing the service are provided.

5. Identifying educational programs, including establishing new educational programs where there
is no suitable, existing setting
Like other jurisdictions, Victoria provides an entitlement to education and training for young people
aged between 15 and 24 years; accordingly, existing education and training funding streams should
be utilised for education provision for young people. Youth Connections funding is not ordinarily
permitted to be used for the establishment and delivery of education/training programs for Youth
Connections participants.

This section outlines the process that should be followed to identify suitable placements for young
people. This is subject to change as a result of implementation of the Victorian Government’s 2011
Budget commitment to support disengaged students which includes:
    allowing Student Resource Package funding to follow students moving to alternative school
     settings; and
    overhauling governance for alternative settings.



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It is particularly important that young people aged under 15 years remain enrolled and connected
with a school. Any program aimed at young people aged under 15 needs to include as a focus
reintegrating the young person with school or another educational provider.

Process for identifying an educational program
    1. Locate and engage with specific young person; discuss the nature of educational needs
    2. Liaise with the home school (if still enrolled) to discuss school-managed options that could
        meet the identified needs
    3. If no programs at the home school are suitable, investigate:
             a. Other local school-based programs, if any, then
             b. Available non-school based programs
        The Local Learning and Employment Network (LLEN) and DEECD Regional Office (Youth
        Transitions Officer (15+) or Student Wellbeing representative (under 15) depending on
        whether program is aimed at 15+ or under 15 year olds) can assist with locating relevant
        programs.

    4. If none can be located in the geographic area, work with schools, registered training
       organisations (RTOs), the DEECD regional office, and the LLEN to explore the possibility of
       establishing a suitable program to be delivered by current providers under existing funding
       arrangements.
    5. Funding/delivery arrangements that can be considered are as follows:
            a. School may use some of its Student Resource Package (SRP) funding to purchase
               program elements to be delivered by other providers within a school-based
               program (this mechanism is suitable for students of all ages)
            b. For young people aged 15-20, a school may use SRP to establish a re-engagement
               program, either delivered entirely or mostly by the school (Satellite program) or
               delivered by a registered and authorised external provider (Community program)
               under contract with the school. The establishment of such programs and referral of
               students to them must be approved by the relevant DEECD regional office.
               Approved late enrolments into these programs attract SRP funding on a pro-rata
               basis until end of Term 3.
            c. If the student is aged 15 or older, they may attend an RTO, with the provider
               attracting funding through the Victorian Training Guarantee (where eligible). For
               Youth Connections providers who are also RTOs, it is acceptable for this mechanism
               to be used to enrol young people who are Youth Connections participants as long as
               the enrolment is documented and clearly meets the training requirements of the
               young person.
            d. For young people under 15, a school may partner with an Adult Community
               Education (ACE) provider under an MOU. The young person remains enrolled at the
               school but attends the ACE provider for course delivery. The school transfers
               funding to the ACE provider using their SRP on a quarterly basis on receipt of a tax
               invoice. Funding arrangements will be determined at the local level, however the
               rate should be no less than the minimum standard student contact hour rate for the
               delivery of services from an ACE provider up to a maximum of $10.00 student
               contact hour.
    6. NOTE: As the minimum school leaving age is 17 under the National Youth Participation
       Requirement, young people under 17 and who have not completed Year 10 must receive an
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         exemption from the relevant DEECD Regional Director to undertake education or training in
         a non-school setting.
     7. If no suitable programs can be located or established using the models described above, the
         Youth Connections provider can make a business case to DEECD requesting an exemption to
         use Youth Connections funding to deliver the training required.
Such a business case must include:
             a. Documentation of the attempts made to find a suitable education option for each
                 young person involved, as per the steps outlined above
             b. Number of young people requiring training
             c. Where the young people are located
             d. The nature of the course required to meet their training needs
             e. The planned outcomes of the course for the young people
             f. Who will provide the training
             g. What funding is required to enable the training to be provided
             h. What mechanisms are in place to safeguard the wellbeing of the young person
             i. Process for reintegrating the young person into a school or other education provider
             j. Documented support from the DEECD regional office (including exemptions by the
                 DEECD Regional Director for young people to attend a non-school setting, where
                 required).
DEECD will then work with DEEWR to make an assessment of whether or not to grant the exemption
for use of Youth Connections funds.




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Western Australia – Specific Requirements

1. Youth Connections Services
In Western Australia, Youth Connections will be delivered according to the following.

Connection Level One: for young people attached to school /education but at risk of disengaging
Youth Connections providers must assist young people at school or in training who are most at risk
at disengaging as follows.


    Through existing planning processes, Providers must liaise with Senior Campus staff, at Public
     Training Provider Colleges, Apprenticentre staff and other appropriate stakeholders to ensure
     that services are provided for students as appropriate.
    If a young person is directly referred to a Provider by a school or parent or other source, the
     Provider must liaise with other local relevant Providers (such as Centrelink or Job Services
     Australia) to determine assistance arrangements.
    If a young person is directly referred to a Youth Connections provider by a school or parent or
     other source, the Provider must liaise with the relevant local referring agent (as above) to
     determine who will assist that young person. This applies to young people whether they are in
     public or private schools or Registered Training Organisations or in any other option or
     pathway where they are at risk of disengagement, or have already disengaged.

Connection Level Two: For young people who are disconnecting or who are severely disconnected
from school /education
In respect of Connection Level 2, Western Australian Youth Connections providers will assist young
people who:
    are in school, or training and are at imminent risk of disengaging
    have recently disengaged from school or other education or training environment
    are severely disengaged from school, education, training, family and community - liaison and
     collaboration with schools, training and other youth support stakeholders will be important in
     the delivery of this service.

Referrals to Youth Connections providers will be brokered through;
    Regional-based Student Services team – 13-15 year olds
    Participation Coordinator – 15-17 year olds
    Providers of career development services, Centrelink or Job Services Australia Provider – 18-
     19 year olds
    Public Training Providers and other training organisations
    Apprenticentre.

Youth Connections providers in Western Australia must offer a mix of the following services:
    A community based learning program
    An intensive, case management youth focused outreach service.

Young people may receive one or other or both.
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In Western Australia, Youth Connections providers must ensure that they are aware of the locations
of CARE Colleges and other existing alternative education facilities. If CARE Colleges and second
chance colleges or campuses or other existing alternative education does exist in a region, the Youth
Connections provider must not duplicate these services and must show they have linkages to these
facilities, where appropriate.

Outreach and Re-engagement Activities
In Western Australia, Youth Connections providers will deliver Outreach and Re-engagement
Activities services as described in the body of the Guidelines.

Providers should:
    Provide local outreach services provided in rural and remote communities to link young
     people into appropriate reengagement pathways
    Engage with local communities such as local government and youth service support networks
     to assist young people with re-engagement pathways
    Provide case management and facilitate mentoring support for students reengaging in
     education and training
    Provide appropriate referral to assist young people with reengaging in education and training.

Strengthening Services in the Region Activities
In Western Australia, Youth Connections providers will deliver these services as described in the
body of the Guidelines, particularly collaborating and supporting schools and training providers to
assist with early intervention and resilience-building strategies and programs to prevent
disengagement.

In working to strengthen services in regions in Western Australia, Youth Connections providers must
also work with:
    Participation Coordinators
    CARE Schools/Colleges
    Providers of career development services
2. Eligible young people
In Western Australia, Youth Connections Services must be delivered to young people aged 13-19.
Youth Connections providers will have the flexibility to offer services outside this age range. If more
than 10% of a Provider’s enrolled caseload (active and suspended) falls outside of this age range at
any point in time, they must seek a waiver from DEEWR.

3. Stakeholders Youth Connections Providers will work with
In Western Australia, Youth Connections providers must have effective and collaborative working
relationships with:
    Participation Coordinators
    Providers of career development services
    Apprenticentre.




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                                                                                      Attachment B
            Support for Teenage Parents Projects - Specific Information

Overview
A patchwork economy has emerged with some regions of Australia still experiencing unacceptably
high unemployment where many job seekers have low education and job skill levels. Residents of
these regions are also prone to high levels of disadvantage with many people in these locations in
receipt of income support for extended periods. In some households, unemployment is a way of
life. Such circumstances can lead to complex and inter-related barriers to education, training and
employment as well as participation in other crucial life areas.

It is important that disadvantaged regions are provided with additional assistance to help break
down these barriers so that all of Australia can contribute to strengthening the national economy.

The Australian Government is investing a total of $304 million over four years in measures to target
areas of significant disadvantage including $47.1 million for Compulsory Participation Plans and
Support for Teenage Parents.

Many teenage parents leave school early without Year 12 qualifications, meaning they are more
likely to end up as long term welfare recipients, with negative long term consequences for both
them and their children. Assisting teenage parents to access education or training will help them
secure a better job so they can provide for their children as they grow older.

From 1 January 2012, teenage parents living in 10 disadvantaged communities who have not
finished Year 12 or equivalent and are receiving Parenting Payment from the Government will need
to meet an individually crafted participation plan. These teenage parents will also be given support
to help them meet these extra responsibilities, including:
     • Support to access quality child care while they are studying or training with close to all of
         their child care costs covered.
     • Support from Youth Connections to help them enrol and attend school, TAFE or other
         training.
     • Support from Communities for Children services to help teenagers with their parenting
         responsibilities through playgroups, parenting education classes, mentoring and support
         groups as well as early learning programs.

 Targeted Locations (Local                             Youth
 Government Areas)                                  Connections
                                                       Region
Bankstown NSW                                    NSW10
Shellharbour NSW                                 NSW14
Wyong NSW                                        NSW30
Logan QLD                                        QLD01
Rockhampton QLD                                  QLD11
Playford SA                                      SA02
Burnie TAS                                       TAS04
Hume VIC                                         VIC13
Shepparton VIC                                   VIC20
Kwinana WA                                       WA05


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The Projects
The Youth Connections – Support for Teenage Parents Projects are an extension of the Youth
Connections program and commence in January 2012. The projects are expected to contribute to
the same objective and deliver the same outcomes as outlined in the Youth Connections Outcomes
Framework and Evaluation Strategy. The Outcomes Framework is included at Appendix 1 to these
Guidelines.

The projects will be delivered by Youth Connections Providers, in addition to their existing Youth
Connections program. Additional service fees will be paid to increase the capacity of their
organisation to better support teenage parents, as a part of the project, and on top of their original
Youth Connections contracted service delivery.

It must be noted that all Youth Connections Providers are expected to assist teenage parents within
their standard Youth Connections service contract, in addition to delivering the Support for Teenage
Parents Projects.

Eligibility
Projects should be targeted to teenage parents who are disengaged or at risk of disengaging from
school or education and thus not achieving Year 12 or equivalent.

The eligibility requirements outlined in the body of these Guidelines still apply. Providers may
submit waivers to the Department for participants who do not meet the eligibility requirements, in
line with the Guidelines.

Some teenage parents may fall outside the target age range specified for each State and Territory.
In this circumstance, the Department would expect Providers to use the ten per cent allowance for
servicing outside the specified age range for these participants.

Service Region
The projects should be focused on the specific Local Government Areas identified. Providers must
continue to support teenage parents across the Youth Attainment and Transition Service Region
under the standard Youth Connections service described in the body of these Guidelines.

Relationship with Centrelink
Under the Compulsory Participation Plans and Support for Teenage Parents initiative, teenage
parents receiving Parenting Payment will have compulsory meetings with Centrelink and
personalised participation plans. Youth Connections is one of a number of options that could be
included in an individual’s participation plan. Given the intensive role that Centrelink will be taking
with teenage parents, it is important for Providers to develop specific arrangements with Centrelink
to manage the referrals of teenage parents.

Service Plans and Evaluative Reports
Providers will include information on their Support for Teenage Parents Projects in their annual
Service Plan and Evaluative Report.

Reporting in YATMIS
Providers must record their progress in delivering the Support for Teenage Parents Project in the
Youth Attainment and Transitions Management Information System (YATMIS). Information will be
entered against the Provider’s Youth Connections contract, and identified as part of their Support for
Teenage Parents Project.


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                                                                                         Attachment C
                        YC / RSA Pilot Project specific information

Purpose of this attachment to the Youth Connections Guidelines
This attachment to the Youth Connections Guidelines relates specifically to the Youth Connections
(YC) / Reducing Substance Abuse (RSA) Pilot Projects (YC/ RSA pilot project). This document
highlights where the Youth Connections Guidelines differ for the YC/ RSA Pilot Projects and sets out
the requirements for the providers delivering the YC / RSA Pilot Projects.


Overview of the Reducing Substance Abuse Program
The Reducing Substance Abuse (petrol sniffing) program forms part of the whole of government
strategy aimed at fighting the debilitating effects of substance abuse (petrol sniffing) in remote
communities in designated Petrol Sniffing Priority (PSS) Zones, which include:
       the remote cross-border region in central Australia, covering the Ngaanyatjarra Lands in
        Western Australia (WA), the Anangu Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara (APY) Lands in South
        Australia (SA) and the communities of Docker River, Imanpa, Mutitjulu and Apatula in the
        Northern Territory (NT)
       the expanded Central Australian region, incorporating the Alice Springs township and
        communities to the west and north of Alice Springs in the NT
       Doomadgee and Mornington Island in the Southern Gulf area of Queensland (QLD), and
       WA East Kimberley region.
DEEWR is funded to support the members of remote communities where Opal fuel has, or will be
rolled out, with diversionary education activities. DEEWR’s Reducing Substance Abuse program
commenced in 2007. The program aims to engage actual or would-be petrol sniffers in activities
which re-engage the individual with learning. Boredom is identified as a key player in petrol sniffing
behaviour. Diversionary activities such as those provided by DEEWR through the three YC/ RSA Pilot
Projects aim to alleviate boredom and provide a sustainable pathway for individuals to re-engage
with accredited learning, work or training.
Both Youth Connections and the Reducing Substance Abuse program have similar objectives,
including assisting youth at risk to achieve outcomes in education. The YC / RSA Pilot Projects are
targeted to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander youth who are at risk from, or engaged with, petrol
sniffing or other volatile substance misuse. The Pilot Projects will support substance misusers so they
can re-engage with learning.


Objectives of YC / RSA Pilot Projects
YC / RSA Pilot Projects aim to achieve the following objectives:
    Implement diversionary education projects that engage Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander
     youth who are affected by petrol sniffing or substance misuse and are disengaged or at risk of
     disengaging from education and training.
    Facilitate behavioural change for each individual.
    Facilitate and/or deliver alternative activities and accredited training (including literacy,
     numeracy and vocational learning) so the young people are able to cope.



                                                                                                     105
     Facilitate pathways for participants back into school, further education and training or work as
      they are ready to engage with such mainstream pathways.
     Promote sustainable partnerships for ongoing success in delivering outcomes for participating
      communities and their youth.


Focus of YC / RSA Pilot Projects
The YC / RSA Pilot Projects should focus on:
     Addressing current issues that individuals are facing (i.e. substance misuse).
     Engaging young people in appropriate activities.
     Introducing some form of accredited education and/or training (through school, TAFE,
      registered training organisations etc).
     Helping those that can effectively engage with formal learning environments to do so in order
      to achieve year 12 or equivalent attainment.


Exceptions to the Youth Connections Guidelines
The YC / RSA Pilot Projects providers must deliver services using the mainstream Youth Connections
service model within the limits of the Youth Connections Guidelines and Indigenous Education
(Targeted Assistance) Act 2000 – Program Guidelines 2009-2012.
The sections below will replace those sections in the mainstream Youth Connections Guidelines to
make them more relevant for the YC / RSA Pilot Projects.


5.1       Eligibility Criteria
The YC / RSA Pilot Projects target Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander youth at risk of, or engaged
with petrol or volatile substance misuse who are disengaged or at risk of disengaging from school
and thus not achieving year 12 or equivalent attainment.
To be eligible to participate in the Pilot Projects, a young person must:
     be an Australian Citizen or a permanent resident of Australia;
     be an Indigenous Australian;
     be identified as being at risk of, or engaged with petrol sniffing or other volatile substance*
      misuse**;
     be aged 10 to 25 years; and
     be identified as being at risk (as detailed in section 2.1.1 of the Youth Connections Guidelines).


Providers must determine a young person’s eligibility to participate in the YC / RSA Pilot Projects
against the set criteria prior to registering them in the program.
*
 Volatile substances are products that produce vapours or fumes that can be inhaled or ‘sniffed’ and can cause
the user to feel ‘high’ or intoxicated. Products that are more commonly inhaled include: petrol, aerosol sprays,
glue, paint and spray paints, butane gas (cigarette lighter refills), toluene/other solvents (i.e. paint removers /
thinners), and liquid paper. Volatile substance use may also be referred to as inhalant use or solvent use and
can cause sudden death.


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**
   The term ‘substance misuse’ within this document refers only to petrol and volatile substance misuse
activity. Other forms of substance misuse (alcohol, kava and other drugs) are not covered under this pilot
project initiative.


5.3      Age Range
The YC / RSA Pilot Projects are targeted at young people aged 10 to 25. YC / RSA Pilot Project
providers wishing to offer services to young people outside the specified age range for the Pilot
Projects, must submit a waiver application to the Department for each additional young person
outside the specified age range they wish to enrol.

Youth Connections providers must not offer services to people aged 26 years or older, or people
younger than 8.


9.2      Coverage of the Service Region
Providers must make services available to eligible young people in the priority zones for petrol
sniffing found within each of the YC / RSA Pilot Projects Youth Connections Service Regions. This
includes young people from both government and non‐government school sectors.
While focus of effort under the YC / RSA Pilot Projects should be placed on servicing the priority
zones for petrol sniffing, it is anticipated given the transient nature of petrol sniffing that the Pilot
Project services will be available across the broader Youth Connections Service Region.
To ensure coverage of the Service Region, organisations will need to make appropriate
arrangements to deliver services, such as establishing more than one delivery site, or forming
partnerships with other organisations.
Strategies may include operating one day a week in a local education provider or Local Government
premises, or developing an arrangement with the Partnership Broker to share facilities.
It is the responsibility of the Provider to manage the intake of young people to ensure those young
people most at risk within each Connection Level receive services.


12.2     Service Plan
Under the YC / RSA Pilot Projects, the equivalent document to the Youth Connections Service Plan is
the Project Plan.
At the commencement of each year the YC / RSA Pilot Project provider must submit a Project Plan.
The Project Plan template will be provided by DEEWR and will require an outline of the Providers’
operational strategy and financial budget for the year (as detailed in Schedule 1 of the YC / RSA
Funding Agreement).
The Project Plan must be submitted:
      30 days after the funding agreement is executed; and
      on 30 January 2012.
The Project Plan must be approved by the Department and is to be considered part of the funding
agreement, and Providers must deliver the YC / RSA Pilot Projects in accordance with the Youth
Connections Service Model and the Project Plan approved by the Department. Funding Agreement
Payments are contingent on approval of the Project Plan by the Department.



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DEEWR must be notified in writing of any amendments to the Project Plan (see section C.2 of the YC
/ RSA Funding Agreement).
12.6    Provision of Financial Statements
Providers are required to submit an income and expenditure statement as part of the Progress
Report as detailed in Schedule 1 of the YC / RSA Funding Agreement. The income and expenditure
statement must be against the budget statement outlined and agreed to in your Project Plan.
Providers are required to submit an audited financial acquittal for the 2011 and 2012 calendar years
by 30 March 2013, this should be in accordance with clause 12 of the Funding Agreement and as
specified at Item L of the Funding Agreement.


13.1    Service Fees
This section in the Youth Connections Guidelines is not relevant for the YC / RSA Pilot Projects.

The YC / RSA Pilot Project providers are required to submit a budget as part of their Project Plan and
expenditure should be in accordance with the proposed budget. Changes to the budget at any time
should be discussed with the DEEWR Contract Manager and approved by the Education, Access and
Engagement Team Director.


14.1    Youth Connections Services Contract
The equivalent document to the Youth Connections Services Contract for the YC / RSA Pilot Projects
is the YC / RSA Funding Agreement. The YC / RSA Funding Agreement is a contract between the
Department and a Youth Connections provider organisation, defining obligations of both parties and
the funding arrangements.
The YC / RSA Funding Agreement is the primary source containing the agreed terms between the
parties and should be read as taking priority over anything contained within these Guidelines.


Section 14 Contractual Obligations
All reference to Service Contract in this section should be read as Funding Agreement.




                                                                                                    108
                                                             Attachment D
        Youth Connections Client Registration and Consent Forms


1. Client Registration and Consent Form
2. Client Registration and Consent Form (Verbal)




                                                                      109
                                  [THIS FORM MUST BE PRINTED ON PROVIDER LETTERHEAD]
          YOUTH CONNECTIONS - CLIENT REGISTRATION & CONSENT FORM
Personal Details
First Names:                                                                     Date of birth: ……../……/……

Last Name:                                                                            Male           Female
Centrelink Reference Number (Optional):                                          Referral source:



A.        PRIVACY NOTICE – Youth Connections Program (the Program)

I understand that:

     a)    [Insert name of Youth Connections (YC) provider] will collect my personal information to administer, evaluate or monitor
           the Program and may disclose it to the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations (DEEWR) for such
           purposes:
                                                                                                                                         YES  NO 
     b)    my personal information may be disclosed by DEEWR or by [insert name of YC provider] to the following organisations for
           the administration, evaluation or monitoring of the Program, and/or for other purposes indicated below:
                Centrelink or providers who deliver other Commonwealth programs such as Job Services Australia providers, School
                  Business Community Partnership Brokers, or registered training organisations if referring you to those organisations
                providers such as medical and/or mental health services if referring you to such a provider
                your school (including teachers and welfare personnel), to obtain information to confirm your eligibility for the
                  Program
                Centrelink and other agencies if required or authorised by law if you are receiving income support regarding
                  participation in the Program
                other Youth Connections providers, if you transfer for the purpose of the program
                the Australian National Audit Office
                the Department of Health and Ageing
                state and territory governments
                the Council of Australian Governments.
                                                                                                                                         YES  NO 
     c)    my personal information may be otherwise disclosed by DEEWR or [insert name of YC provider] without my consent where
           authorised under or required by law.
                                                                                                                                         YES  NO 




B.        DISCLOSURE OF PERSONAL INFORMATION TO PARENT / GUARDIAN

Personal information collected about you in connection with the Youth Connections program may be disclosed by DEEWR or Youth
Connections providers to your parents/guardians.
                                                                                                                                         YES  NO 
(If you consent to the disclosure of personal information to your parents/guardians, tick Yes)




PARENT / GUARDIAN CONTACT DETAILS

1.   Name (please print): ________________________________________________________________________________________________

2.   Relationship to participant: ___________________________________________________________________________________________

3.   Address:__________________________________________________________________________________________________________
     _________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

4.   Contact Numbers:
      Mobile: ______________________________________________________________________________________________________
      Home: _______________________________________________________________________________________________________
      Work: ________________________________________________________________________________________________________

5.   Email address: _____________________________________________________________________________________________________
 C. CONSENT TO PARTICIPATE IN PROGRAM ACTIVITIES

1.   I understand that, as part of the Program, I will be participating in a variety of activities which may involve a certain degree of risk in an environment
     where professional medical and rescue services may not always be immediately available. Examples of these activities include:

           [YC provider to insert list of activities they will be undertaking]
          
          

     The risks of those activities include:
         [YC provider to insert list the risks of activities they will be undertaking]
        
        

2.   I understand that from time to time, additional consent may be sought for my participation in activities which may have a higher
     degree of risk than those activities outlined above. My additional consent will be required before I can participate in those activities:
                                                                                                                                                 YES  NO 

3.   I have carefully considered the risk involved and hereby consent to participate in activities such as those listed above:
                                                                                                                                                 YES  NO 

4.   In the case of an emergency, I understand every effort will be made to contact my parent or guardian or the Emergency Contact
      identified below:
                                                                                                                                                 YES  NO 




1.1.1.1     EMERGENCY CONTACT DETAILS

 TICK THIS BOX IF YOUR EMERGENCY CONTACT DETAILS ARE THE SAME AS YOUR PARENT / GUARDIAN DETAILS

1.   Name (please print): ________________________________________________________________________________________________

2.   Relationship to participant: ___________________________________________________________________________________________

3.   Address:__________________________________________________________________________________________________________

     _________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

4.   Contact Numbers:
      Mobile: ______________________________________________________________________________________________________
      Home: _______________________________________________________________________________________________________
      Work: ________________________________________________________________________________________________________

5.   Email address: _____________________________________________________________________________________________________
 D. DECLARATION
Note: Giving false or misleading information is a serious offence

I declare that:

     a)     The information I have provided on this form is complete and correct.
                                                                                                                                               YES  NO 

     b)     I, or my parent or guardians have read and had this form explained to me.
                                                                                                                                               YES  NO 

     c)     I consent to my personal information being used and disclosed in accordance with this form.
                                                                                                                                               YES  NO 

     d)     The Youth Connections provider has explained DEEWR’s Youth Connections complaints handling process for the program

            to me or my parent or guardian. (Provider should refer to Program Guidelines Sections 4.5 and 16.3)
                                                                                                                                               YES  NO 


     TICK “YES” TO ONE OF BOXES BELOW:


     e)     I am (a) 14 years of age or over and (b) understand and consent to the risks involved in participating in Youth Connections Activities, as
            outlined in the “Consent to Participate in Program Activities” box above.
                                                                                                                                          YES  NO 

     f)     I am (a) under 14 years of age but (b) my Parent or Guardian understand and consent to the risks involved in my participation in Youth
            Connections Activities, as outlined in the “Consent to Participate in Program Activities” box above.
                                                                                                                                         YES  NO 


          Name of Person Signing: (If participant ticked “yes” to clause (f) above - this must be the parent or guardian of the participant)


          …………………………………………………………..
          Signature of Participant or Parent / Guardian: (please circle who has signed)


          …………………………………………………………..                                            Date: _____ / _____ / _____
                                  [THIS FORM MUST BE PRINTED ON PROVIDER LETTERHEAD]
        YOUTH CONNECTIONS - CLIENT REGISTRATION & CONSENT FORM
                               (VERBAL)
Personal Details

First Names:                                                                      Date of birth: ……../……/……

Last Name:                                                                             Male              Female

Centrelink Reference Number (Optional):                                           Referral source:



A. PRIVACY NOTICE – Youth Connections Program (the Program)
Please explain the following information to the participant:

     a) [Insert name of Youth Connections (YC) provider] will collect the participant’s personal information to administer, evaluate or monitor
        the Program and may disclose it to the Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations (DEEWR) for such purposes;

     b) The participant’s personal information may be disclosed by DEEWR or by [insert name of YC provider] to the following organisations for
        the administration, evaluation or monitoring of the Program, and/or for other purposes indicated below:
             Centrelink or providers who deliver other Commonwealth programs such as Job Services Australia providers, School Business
                Community Partnership Brokers, or Registered Training Organisations if referring the participant to those organisations
             providers such as medical and/or mental health services if referring the participant to such a provider
             the participant’s school (including teachers and welfare personnel), to obtain information to confirm their eligibility for the Program
             Centrelink and other agencies if required or authorised by law if the participant is receiving income support regarding participation
                in the Program
             other Youth Connections providers, if the participants transfers for the purpose of the Program
             the Australian National Audit Office
             the Department of Health and Ageing
             state and territory governments
             the Council of Australian Governments.

     c) The participant’s personal information may be otherwise disclosed by DEEWR or [insert name of YC provider] without their consent
        where authorised under or required by law.



B. DISCLOSURE OF PERSONAL INFORMATION TO PARENTS OR GUARDIANS

The participant agrees to personal information being disclosed to their parent/guardian:                                                   YES  NO 
(so long as those details are provided by the participant)



PARENT / GUARDIAN CONTACT DETAILS (only need if you ticked “yes” above)

6.    Name (please print): ________________________________________________________________________________________________

7.    Relationship to participant: ___________________________________________________________________________________________

8.    Address:__________________________________________________________________________________________________________
      _________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

9.    Contact Numbers:
       Mobile: ______________________________________________________________________________________________________
       Home: _______________________________________________________________________________________________________
       Work: ________________________________________________________________________________________________________

10. Email address: _____________________________________________________________________________________________________
C. CONSENT TO PARTICIPATE IN PROGRAM ACTIVITIES

5.   I have informed the participant that as part of the Program that they will be participating in a variety of activities which may involve some risk,
     including but not limited to being conducted in locations where professional medical and rescue services may not be immediately available. These
     activities include:

              [YC provider to insert list of activities they will be undertaking]
          
          

     The risks of those activities include:
           [YC provider to insert list the risks of activities they will be undertaking]
          
          

6.   The participant has informed me that they understand that from time to time, additional consent may be sought in relation to their
     participation in additional activities to those activities outlined above:
                                                                                                                                           YES  NO 

7.   The participant has informed me that they have carefully considered the risk involved and consent to participate in activities such
     as those I described above:
                                                                                                                                           YES  NO 

8.   The participant has informed me that in the case of an emergency, they understand every effort will be made to contact their parent
     or guardian or Emergency Contact listed below:
                                                                                                                                        YES  NO 




EMERGENCY CONTACT DETAILS

 TICK THIS BOX IF THE PARTICIPANT’S EMERGENCY CONTACT DETAILS ARE THE SAME AS THEIR PARENT / GUARDIAN
DETAILS

1.   Name (please print): ________________________________________________________________________________________________

2.   Relationship to participant: ___________________________________________________________________________________________

3.   Address:__________________________________________________________________________________________________________

     _________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

4.   Contact Numbers:
      Mobile: ______________________________________________________________________________________________________
      Home: _______________________________________________________________________________________________________
      Work: ________________________________________________________________________________________________________

5.   Email address: _____________________________________________________________________________________________________
D. DECLARATION

Note: Giving false or misleading information is a serious offence

As a representative of [insert name of YC provider], I declare that:

     g)     The information I have provided on this form is complete and correct to the best of my knowledge.
                                                                                                                                            YES  NO 
     h)     I have read and explained in full the privacy notice on this form to the young person named above or their parent/guardian
                                                                                                                                            YES  NO 
     i)     In my opinion the young person/parent/guardian understood the privacy notice, and that the young person’s personal
            information was being collected and may be disclosed to the other parties indicated in the privacy notice.
                                                                                                                                            YES  NO 
     j)     The young person/parent/guardian did not object to any element of the privacy notice.
                                                                                                                                            YES  NO 
     k)     I have explained DEEWR’s Youth Connections complaints handling process to the young person.
            (Provider should refer to Program Guidelines Sections 4.5 and 16.3)
                                                                                                                                            YES  NO 
     l)     I have read and explained in full the “Consent to Participant in Program Activities” on this form to the young person named
            above or their parent/guardian.
                                                                                                                                            YES  NO 

     TICK “YES” TO ONE OF BOXES BELOW:

     m) The participant is 14 years of age or over and in my opinion understands and consents to the risks involved in participating
        in Youth Connections Activities, as outlined in the “Consent to Participate in Program Activities” box above.
                                                                                                                                            YES  NO 

     n)     The participant is under 14 years of age but, in my opinion their parent or guardians (who I have explained this Registration
            Form to) understand and consent to the risks involved in the young person’s participation in Youth Connections Activities, as
            outlined in the “Consent to Participate in Program Activities” box above.
                                                                                                                                            YES  NO 



Name of Person Signing

…………………………………………………………..
Signature

…………………………………………………………..                                              Date: _____ / _____ / ______


Date the Registration Form was explained, if different to date of signature: _____ / _____ / ______


The Registration Form was explained to the:

 Participant
 Parent/Guardian                    Name: ………………………………………………………….………………………..
                                                                                        Attachment E

                 Centrelink referrals for participants of different ages
Young people 14 and under
Young people participating in Youth Connections who are 14 years or under will not have a Centrelink
referral in YATMIS as Centrelink referrals are restricted to 15 to 19 years.

Young people 15-19 years old
All young people with a Centrelink Customer Reference Number (CRN) should have a Centrelink
referral in YATMIS. This will include:
    young people receiving Centrelink income support payments
    young people who have a CRN, who are not in receipt of income support payments (e.g. a 15 –
     20 year old young person non-allowee or a holder of a Low Income Health Care Card)

Note:
Youth Connections providers can easily see in YATMIS if a participant record has a Centrelink referral
as a ‘Centrelink’ tab will be present on the record.

Youth Connections participants who are 20 years old (and under 21 years old)
1. Young people who are 20 years of age when they start participating in Youth Connection will not
   have an electronic YATMIS referral.

   If these Youth Connections participants are also Centrelink customers, the procedure for notifying
   Centrelink of their participation in the program is as follows:

   (i)  Youth Connections providers to identify participants who are 20 years old and have a
        Centrelink Customer Reference Number (CRN).
   (ii) Youth Connections providers to email the Pathways.To.Work@humanservices.gov.au mailbox
        with the following information:

            The young person’s:
             CRN
               Full name (i.e. John Barry Smith)
               Address
               Date of Birth
               Enrolment Start Date
               Anticipated Enrolment End Date (this should always be given as 31 Dec 2013. Once
                the young person exits, the actual end date will be subsequently updated on their
                record).


            The Youth Connections providers:
             Organisation name
               Office address that the young person is linked to
               Office phone number
            Centrelink’s mailbox will be monitored on a daily basis. A ‘Youth Activities’ Approved
            Activities Code (YAC) will be entered into the Centrelink system if the young person is a
            Youth Allowance Jobseeker only. The Centrelink Pathways to Work Contact will arrange
            for the young person’s Employment Pathway Plan (EPP) to be updated to reflect this
            activity and for the young person to sign the EPP if they are a Youth Allowance Jobseeker.

   (iii) Once the young person (20 years or over) has completed the program, is exited, or is not
         actively attending, the Provider should email the Centrelink mailbox again with the following
         information:

            The young person’s:
             CRN
               full name (i.e. John Barry Smith)
               Address
               Date of Birth
               Enrolment End Date
               Reason for exit

            The Youth Connections providers:
             Organisation name
               Office address that the young person was linked to
               Office phone number


            Centrelink will ensure that the young person’s Centrelink record is updated.

2. Young people who are already participating in Youth Connections at 19 years of age and are
   continuing in the program past their 20th birthday:

   In the event that the provider has a young person who is already in Youth Connections when they
   turn 20, the provider should not email the Centrelink mailbox listed above but continue to service
   the young person. The referral will continue in the Centrelink and ESS system.

Young people aged 21 years old and over
When young people turn 21 they are transferred from Youth Allowance to Newstart, if eligible. The
Activity Test Approved Activity rules which govern Newstart differ from Youth Allowance and as such,
the ‘Youth Activities’ Approved Activities Code, (which is applicable to Youth Allowance) is not
applicable to Newstart. Young people transferring to Newstart may also be required to connect with a
Job Services Australia (JSA) or Disability Employment Services (DES) provider at this point.

Note:
From July 2012, Youth Allowance eligibility will be extended to 21 years of age. The qualifying age for
Newstart Allowance will be raised from 21 years to 22 years of age. Therefore Youth Allowees will not
be transferred to Newstart Allowance until 22 years of age.

Young people who are 21 and over when they enrol in Youth Connections, who are receiving a
Centrelink payment, can still participate in Youth Connections. However providers should be aware
that the young person over 21 years in receipt of Newstart Allowance will also be required to
undertake compulsory activities, other than Youth Connections, in their EPP to satisfy their Activity
Test requirements.

IT functionality to add Youth Connections referrals and participation status updates is limited to
people aged between 15 years and 19 years in Centrelink’s online systems (including the EPP).
However, JSA and DES providers are able to manually refer to Youth Connections and update a young
person’s EPP with the Youth Connections activity if they are 21 years or over.

There will not be a new YATMIS online referral for young people who are referred to Youth
Connections if they are 21 years and over. However if the young person is connected with a JSA or DES
provider, the JSA or DES provider is able to update the young person’s EPP with the Youth Connections
activity. These EPPs are viewable by Centrelink.

In the event that the provider has a young person who is already in Youth Connections when they turn
20 and the young person remains continuously in Youth Connections until they turn 21, the provider
should continue to service the young person. If the referral was recorded prior to the customer
turning 20 years of age, it will continue in the Centrelink system.

However, Youth Connections will no longer fully satisfy the young person’s Activity Test requirements
if they qualify for Newstart allowance. These young people will be required to connect with either a
JSA or DES provider who will make an assessment of their current circumstances. If they agree that
Youth Connections is still the most appropriate activity for that young person, they will update the EPP
to reflect this, in addition to other compulsory activities or contacts to ensure the young person is fully
meeting their Activity Test requirements.

Note:
Providers will need to discuss possible co-servicing arrangements with young people on Newstart
allowance and other organisations (for example JSA or DES) to avoid duplication of servicing and
provide the most suitable support arrangements for the young person. Providers can continue to use
YATMIS to record the support provided to young people 21 and over despite not having a YATMIS
Centrelink referral.

				
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