6,500 places on training initiative
Government funding for training courses is better spent on “motivated young adults” than on “reluctant teenagers” who may not be well behaved, Minister for Education and Skills Ruairí Quinn has said.
Mr Quinn and Tánaiste Eamon Gilmore this afternoon announced details of Momentum, a new initiative involving up to 6,500 new training places in such areas as animation, information and communications technology, the green economy and social and health care services.
At the announcement of the initiative, Mr Quinn was asked about the simultaneous cuts to post-Leaving Certificate courses announced in Budget 2013. Many of the PLCs facing funding cuts currently provide courses in the aforementioned fields.
“These were the harmonisation of the pupil teacher ratio, in post Leaving Certificate courses along with post primary on the basis that motivated young adults who are attending a course will be better behaved and more engaged than reluctant teenagers, shall we say,” he said.
“However, I have met with the chief executive, Jacinta Stewart, of the City of Dublin VEC and I’ve asked her to give me a complete impact analysis across the City of Dublin VEC...and she’s going to come back and provide me with that and we’ll then look at see what the impact of all this is.”
Momentum will be aimed at the long-termed unemployed and people aged under-25 years.
It will have a budget of €20 million next year and will offer on-the-job experience as well as training and will be delivered by the public and private sector through over 62 programmes in 87 locations around the State.
Mr Quinn said the courses would be free, aligned to industry requirements and would last between 11 and 45 weeks.
He said there were major vacancies in the labour market for certain types of skill sets, and “we’re trying to match those skills with people who have existing skills but in the wrong area and to match them back into an active labour market environment”.
The reduction in the allocation to PLC courses would not be reversed but Mr Quinn said he had asked how the impact of the cuts could be “integrated into the provision of services across the City of Dublin VEC”.