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Apprenticeship Reboot Announcement Timely

For immediate release

Apprenticeship Reboot Announcement Timely
18 December 2013

The Industry Training Federation welcomes the Government’s announcement today to extend the reboot subsidy for eligible apprentices and trainees by another 4,000 places.

“This is an appropriate adjustment by the Government to extend the reboot scheme as it has proved to be successful” say the Industry Training Federation Chief Executive Mark Oldershaw. “The initial allocation open to the first 10,000 eligible apprentices and trainees will be fully taken up by the end of this year and as such an extension seemed to be a natural thing to do. I would expect that the additional 4,000 will be taken up quickly and my belief is that further investment in industry training would be entirely justified.”

“From the Government’s perspective industry training represents exceptional value for their investment, given that industry contributes a direct cash contribution of around 30 percent. It is also acknowledged that apprentices and trainees are earning a wage whilst completing their qualifications, thus contributing to the New Zealand economy rather than building up a student loan” said Mr Oldershaw.

“With the New Zealand economy starting to show some sure signs of improvement it is expected that industry trainee and apprentice numbers will improve as employment numbers grow. The industry training sector has had a significant amount of funding re-appropriated to other tertiary education providers over the last 5 years so now is the time to look at an increase in base-line funding for ITOs.”

“Over the last 2 years the ITO sector has gone through a significant structural change and is working with employers to ensure that the right skill sets are being provided to industry to continue to lift workplace productivity.”

Mr Oldershaw did remark that it is disappointing that Government is still referring to the notion of ‘phantom trainees’ being funded within the industry training system. “The ITO sector is forward looking. We all acknowledge that there have been discrepancies in the distant past in relation to funding non-existent trainees however those days are well and truly behind us. It would be refreshing if the Government could also move on from these references and focus on the value that ITOs provide within the wider vocational education and training sector.”

The Industry Training Federation is a voluntary membership organisation representing all of New Zealand's Industry TrainingOrganisations.

ENDS

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