Tuesday, 5 March 2013

Questions (188)

Seán Kyne

Question:

188. Deputy Seán Kyne asked the Minister for Education and Skills if invalidity pension is an eligible scheme for qualifying for a springboard course and if not, whether it can be included in view of the fact that its allowance-based counterpart, disability allowance, is an eligible scheme. [11610/13]

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Written answers (Question to Education)

Springboard is not a general education measure. It is a specific initiative that strategically targets funding of free part-time higher education courses to enable unemployed people who have lost jobs in sectors where employment levels will not return, to upskill or reskill in areas where there are identified labour market skills shortages or employment opportunities. To be eligible for a place on a Springboard course a person must be unemployed, actively seeking employment, and be in receipt of one of the qualifying Social Protection allowances (as listed on www.springboardcourses.ie) or be signing for credits or be previously self employed. Invalidity Pension is not one of the qualifying payments for Springboard 2012. A call for proposals for courses to be run under Springboard 2013 issued to higher education providers at the end of February. It is expected that details of the courses that are approved together with the eligibility criteria will be available on the dedicated information and applications website www.springboardcourses.ie in June 2013.