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In the ever-evolving landscape of employment and skills development, learnership contracts play an important role, particularly within the framework of Bargaining Council Agreements. These agreements are designed to foster collaboration between employers and employees, ensuring fair and equal conditions in the workplace.

Learnerships, are a structured form of on-the-job training, that serves as a powerful tool within these agreements, contributing to the development of skilled and industry growth. 

Bargaining Council Agreements often set industry standards and guidelines for employment conditions.  Learnership contracts help employers meet these standards by ensuring that training and development are integrated into the employment relationship.


What does the Main Collective agreement entail with regard to the Learnership Agreement; 


Main Collective Agreement Clause 28 


28. Learnership and student contracts 


28.1 An Employer may not employ a person as a Learner or Learner Hairdresser (also known as an Apprentice) unless a learnership contract registered with SSETA or a Student in terms of a student agreement registered with the Council and approved by that Council has been entered into; 

28.2 A learnership contract or student agreement shall be: 


28.2.1 in writing and signed personally by the learner or student and his/her legal guardian in the event of the learner/student being minor, the Employer, and by the Training Provider. 


28.2.2 concluded within 90 (ninety) days after commencement of employment. 


28.2.3 in accordance with the learnership contract prescribed by SSETA or student agreement prescribed by the Council, the latter of which is annexed hereto as annexure “G”. 


28.3 An Employer shall not, directly, or indirectly, in way or manner, receive any counter value of whatsoever nature, from a learner or student, for entering into a learnership contract or student agreement with a learner or student or student.


28.4 The Student shall, on an annual basis, pay a prescribed fee to the council for the purpose of administering the relationship between City & Guilds and the students. 


28.5 Learners and Students shall be compelled to become and remain members of the Sick Pay Fund contemplated in clause 29 below and to contribute to the payment of the Council Levy, until such time the Learner / Student for a period of 30 (thirty) months whichever happens first time. For the purpose of this clause 28.5 “engages” shall mean the relationship between the learner/student and his or her employer by virtue of either a learnership contract or student contract being entered into which contract will not be deemed to be an employment agreement between the learner/student and his or her employer. The exemption contemplated in this clause 28.5, shall not be applicable to any other category of trainees. 


28.6 All Learners/students shall be registered with the Council and the expenses relating to benefits indicated in the Agreement shall be deducted by Employers. 


28.7 An Employer shall be obligated to afford a Learner or Student time off to attend the courses that a Learner or Student is obligated to attend at a Training Provider as determined by the Learnership contract or Student Agreement, entered into with the Employer. The time that the Learner or Student spends at the Training Provider shall form part of the Learner or Student's normal working hours. 


28.8 A Learner shall only be entitled to the allowances contemplated in schedule 2 of the NMWA if such a Learner has concluded a learnership agreement as postulated in section 17 of the Skills Development Act, Act 97 of 1998 i.e a learnership agreement:- 


28.8.1 entered into by and between the Learner, an Employer, and an accredited Training provider; and  


28.8.2 which agreements are in the prescribed form and are registered in the prescribed manner. 


28.9 Should a Learner conclude a learnership agreement in terms of section 17 of the Skills Development Act, Act 97 of 1998, the allowances populated in Schedule 2 to the NMWA will be used for purposes of calculating any compulsory contributions to be made in terms of this Main Collective Agreement. 


In conclusion, learnership contracts are significant within the context of Bargaining Council Agreements. They act as a tool for skills development, promote fair employment practices, and contribute to the overall enhancement of the workplace. With industries evolving, the incorporation of learnerships into these agreements ensures that both employers and employees are well-prepared to navigate the challenges of a dynamic and competitive job market. This, in turn, plays a crucial role in contributing to the sustained growth and success of the economy. 

Annexure G - Student Agreement
Download • 1.24MB

Workplace Based Learning Programme Agreement
Download PDF • 1.46MB


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