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Free Training Expanded to 18 and 19 year olds

Posted by Community Colleges NZ on 10 September 2013 | 0 Comments

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Steven Joyce, 4 September 2013
Youth Guarantee expanded to 18 and 19 year olds 
The Government’s Youth Guarantee scheme will be expanded to 18 and 19 
year olds from 1 January 2014, Tertiary Education, Skills and Employment 
Minister Steven Joyce announced today.

 The government established the Youth Guarantee scheme in 2008 for students
who find the traditional classroom environment challenging and are at risk of
dropping out of school.

It provides fees-free Level 1 and 2 qualifications at tertiary institutions and
at trades and services academies, encouraging students to gain practical
qualifications that will set them up for a range of career options including
in priority trade areas such as carpentry, engineering, horticulture, plumbing,
gas-fitting, and brick-and block-laying.

The Youth Guarantee is currently available to 16 and 17 year olds, 15 year-old
students with early leaving exemptions, and 18 year-old teen parent beneficiaries.

8900 students enrolled in Youth Guarantee programmes in 2012, with only
7 per cent of students in 2012 having achieving NCEA Level 2 by the time
they entered the programme.

“The Youth Guarantee has been very successful at encouraging 16 and 17
year olds to stay engaged in education, completing Level 1 and 2 qualifications
instead of dropping out and going on a benefit,” Mr Joyce says.

“However, there are older teenagers aged 18 and 19 who have already
dropped out of school, who need a chance to get that vital first level 2
qualification.The expansion of Youth Guarantee will target those
young people.

“With Youth Guarantee, Trades Academies, and the new Vocational Pathways,
the Government is confident that every single teenager has a fees-free path
to a level 3 qualification, giving them access to training and skills for employment.”

Mr Joyce says 18and 19 year olds in Youth Guarantee will be able to access
the Student Loan Scheme, for living costs and course-related costs. They will
also be eligible for student allowances.

“The expansion of Youth Guarantee will occur at the same time as the
Government is making all Level 1 and 2 courses fees-free for 20-24 year olds.

“From 2014 onwards, all New Zealanders below the age of 24 will be able to
access fees-free level 1 and 2 courses. Level 1 and 2 courses deliver core
foundational skills that provide students with the skills required for higher level
vocational study, training and employment,” Mr Joyce says.