the Minister for Education and Skills, Richard Bruton T.D., and Minister of State John Halligan T.D., announced 26 new national apprenticeships have been approved for further development in areas ranging from Animation to Healthcare.
This Government is committed to more than doubling the number of new apprentices registered to 9,000 by 2020 and expanding further into new areas. Budget 2018 allocated €122m for apprenticeship training, an increase of almost 24% on the previous year. This will allow the Government to deliver 10 more apprenticeship programmes and over 6,000 more apprenticeship registrations in 2018.
The new apprenticeships announced today span a wide range of skills and sectors and will be developed in response to identified skill needs in the economy. A number of programmes in existing industry sectors such as construction, engineering, hospitality and ICT will be expanded. We will also developed apprenticeships for the first time in a number of new areas such as healthcare, equine science and agriculture.
All of the new apprenticeships are flexible, ranging in duration from two years to four years and will be offered at levels 5 to 10 on the National Framework of Qualifications. Following today’s announcement, the proposals will now move forward to the detailed development stage. It is estimated that the development process will take between 12 and 15 months.
Speaking at the launch today Minister Bruton said “One of the greatest causalities of the recession were apprenticeships. Registrations collapsed and fell by over 80% during the period. I am keen during my time as Minister to now, not only reverse this trend and rebuild traditional pathways but to significantly expand apprenticeships into new industries. I believe this is key to fulfilling our ambition to be the best in Europe by 2026.
“The programmes we are announcing today will provide excellent opportunities and choice for school leavers and other learners and allow employers shape the programmes that best suit their workforce needs. We will add a number of programmes in existing industry sectors such as construction, while also expanding into completely new areas such as healthcare.
“These new proposals will refresh the pipeline of proposals established through the first call in 2015 and complement the range of new apprenticeships being developed. We are committed to more than doubling the number of new apprentices registered to 9,000 by 2020 and expanding further into new areas. Budget 2018 allocated €122m to apprenticeship training, an increase of almost 24% to deliver on this goal”.
Minister Halligan said “Today’s announcement is an important step in meeting the targets set out in our Apprenticeship and Traineeship Plan, which seeks to double the number of annual apprenticeship and traineeship enrolments to 14,000 by 2020”.
Both Ministers thanked the Apprenticeship Council for all their ongoing work on the expansion of apprenticeships in Ireland and acknowledged the high level of commitment from all the proposers of the apprenticeship proposals who engaged in the process.
Pat O’Doherty, Chairman of the Apprenticeship Council and Chief Executive of ESB, said the Council was very impressed with the high quality of the proposals and the Council are now looking forward to working with the 26 successful proposers to develop these proposals into national apprenticeships.