Government announces funding for trades training equipment in Northeast B.C.

DAWSON CREEK, B.C. — The provincial government announced that Northeast B.C’s three school districts will be receiving funding over the next three years to support youth trades programs with the purchase of new training equipment.

The Youth Trades Capital Equipment Program will see $7.5 million dispersed to school districts across B.C. during the current school year, with the remaining $7.5 million spread out over the following two years. The government says that more than $9 million of the $15-million in total will be distributed to B.C.’s 42 rural school districts.

In the next three years, School District 60 will receive $110,679 to purchase equipment including a table-top tire changer, precision lathes and sanders. $108,822 will go to School District 59 for the purchase of plasma torches, table saws and lathes. The Fort Nelson School District is receiving $85,514 over the next three years for the purchase of equipment including a car hoist, robotics kits and wood lathes.

“Students throughout the province are benefiting from this investment in trades training equipment,” said Education Minister Mike Bernier. “Strengthening trades programs in schools helps ensure students receive the hands-on experiences they need to succeed in this changing world – and be prepared for lifelong careers in the trades and technology industry.”

To be eligible for funding, school districts must have demonstrated that the capital investment supports the delivery of one or more Industry Training Authority youth trades programs. There are currently nearly 45,000 participants in apprenticeship programs in the industry training system (apprentices, high school youth and foundation), more than double the 20,050 participants when the ITA was created in 2004.

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