Skilled trades students in the Campbell River School District will benefit from a three-year, $15-million investment by the B.C. government to support youth-trades programs with the purchase of new trades-training equipment.
School District 72 is receiving $184,201 over the next three years for the purchase of equipment including table saws, plasma table cutters and jointers.
“I believe this, that if you train people closer to where they live, they are more likely to stay there and provide you with the critical work force that you require going forward,” said Shirley Bond, minister of jobs.
The Youth Trades Capital Equipment Program will see $7.5 million dispersed during the current school year to school districts throughout B.C. The remaining $7.5 million will be distributed in 2017-18 ($4 million) and 2018-19 ($3.5 million) school years.
Over the three-year program, more than $9 million of the total $15-million fund will be distributed to B.C.’s 42 rural school districts.
This investment in rural communities supports the recently announced “Building on our Rural Advantages: B.C.’s Rural Economic Development Strategy.”
The strategy outlines the Province’s long-term vision to ensure British Columbians in all regions have the opportunity for well-paying jobs and a high quality of life in their community.
The Youth Trades Capital Equipment Program is designed to increase participation and successful completion of youth trades programs and the number of students that continue on to further trades-training programs, ensure school districts have safe and appropriate modern trades equipment to support the delivery of trades-training programs, and gain a better understanding of current inventory and future need for youth trades equipment in each district.
To be eligible for funding, school districts must have demonstrated that the capital investment supports the delivery of one or more Industry Training Authority (ITA) youth trades programs.
In partnership with the Ministry of Education and secondary schools, the ITA funds six youth programs in B.C. – Youth Discover the Maker Way, Youth Discover the Trades, Youth Explore Trades Skills, Youth Explore Trades Sampler, Youth Train in Trades and Youth Work in Trades.
These programs map out a clear path for youth to start their trades training earlier in high school, through post-secondary and into the workforce where they can continue an apprenticeship.
The ITA leads and co-ordinates British Columbia’s skilled trades system by working with employers, employees, industry, labour, training providers and government to issue credentials, manage apprenticeships, set program standards and increase opportunities in the trades.
Apprenticeship programs are one of the best ways for British Columbians to gain the skills and training they need to succeed in their chosen career. It is estimated 80 per cent of training takes place on the work site and 20 per cent takes place in the class.
The B.C. government is making record investments in modern, safe infrastructure projects throughout the province. In doing so, these construction projects are creating well-paying, family-supporting jobs. These investments are possible because of the fiscal plan of the B.C. government.