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ITA Surpasses Apprenticeship Targets For Third Year

by NationTalk on April 19, 2007799 Views

For Immediate Release
April 19, 2007

Ministry of Economic Development
Industry Training Authority

VICTORIA – The Province’s Industry Training Authority has exceeded its participation performance targets for the third year in a row, increasing the number of active apprentices and trainees by 132 per cent since 2004.

“These positive results show that the improvements in the trades training system made by the ITA over the past few years are working,” said Economic Development Minister Colin Hansen. “It means we are succeeding in our efforts to develop the talented and skilled workforce B.C. employers need.”In 2004, the provincial government established the ITA with the goal of increasing participation in industry training in B.C. As of March 31, the ITA has exceeded targets set in its service plan in three key areas:

· 34,049 apprentices in B.C., up 132 per cent since 2004 and exceeding the fiscal year-end target by three per cent.

· 9,575 employers/sponsors offering placements to apprentices in B.C., up more than 42 per cent from 6,740 in 2004.

· 3,551 industry training credentials (or “tickets”) awarded in the fiscal year ending March 31, 2007, up 49 per cent from 2,378 in the fiscal year ending March 31, 2005.

Of the 34,049 apprentices/trainees in B.C.:

· 5,647 are youth taking part in programs such as ACE IT and the Secondary School Apprenticeship programs, up more than 556 per cent since 2004. These programs give young people the chance to acquire job skills and credit towards an apprenticeship while still in high school.

In addition, the ITA achieved an above-target score of 82 on its annual Customer Satisfaction Index, based on a telephone survey conducted by BC Stats. The survey measures satisfaction with key components of the industry training system, including work-based training, technical training and ITA customer service.

“That our customers remain satisfied with the quality of training and ITA services even in the face of such rapid and sustained growth is evidence of the contributions of our partners, service providers and staff,” said Brian Clewes, ITA chief executive officer. “The next few years will be about sustaining momentum, while also turning our attention to outstanding issues, including apprenticeship completion rates and access to training.”

A key ITA priority identified in the service plan for the upcoming year is improving completion rates. Last fiscal, completion rates were at 39 per cent, and ITA’s target for this fiscal is 42 per cent. With the introduction of the Training Tax Credit, the Province has already taken steps to encourage apprenticeship completion and employer participation in apprenticeship programs.

Other ITA priorities for this fiscal year include:

· Creating 3,000 new training spaces in keeping with the Premier’s commitment to add 7,000 new apprenticeship spaces by 2010.

· Operating Trade Routes, a state of the art mobile training facility to provide access to skills training in the North;

· Developing a strategy to increase Aboriginal participation in the trades; and

· Continuing to work collaboratively on the provision and expansion of youth programs.

Budget 2007 increases ITA funding by $33 million over the next three years. This is in addition to the $13 million per year increase in 2006 bringing the ITA’s 2007/08 total annual budget to $96.9 million.


Media contact:

Rena Kendall-Craden
Communications Director
Ministry of Economic Development
250 952-0152

Lisa Dooling
Director, Communications and Marketing
Industry Training Authority
604 214-8710

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