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Springboard Programme

Dáil Éireann Debate, Wednesday - 4 November 2020

Wednesday, 4 November 2020

Ceisteanna (102)

Rose Conway-Walsh


102. Deputy Rose Conway-Walsh asked the Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science the number of free or subsidised places on short, modular courses that were being offered through Springboard+ prior to the July stimulus package; the number of additional places were added as part of the July stimulus package; the number of places that are currently being offered;and the number of places that remain unfilled; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [34057/20]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Further and Higher Education)

Under the July Stimulus, funding was announced for short modular courses to be offered in a flexible manner, allowing people to gain important skills without taking a considerable period away from the labour market.

Each module will be stand-alone so that participants can gain skills and put them into practice immediately in the workplace, but modules are also accredited in such a way as to provide building blocks to a full qualification should the student so wish.

11,597 places are being funded on these courses during this academic year. The full allocation of 11,597 places are currently available and Higher Education Institutions are currently taking applications on these courses. All courses will commence in Q1 2021 and early Q2 2021. As applications are currently being taken for these programmes, fill rates are not available.

Springboard+ provides free and heavily subsidised upskilling and reskilling higher education opportunities in areas of identified skills need. Courses are generally of one year duration.

11,514 Springboard+ part-time one year courses are available for the academic year 2020/2021. The application system has been live since June 2020 and courses commence at various points between Autumn 2020 and Spring 2021. While at this point it is not possible to give an exact figure of how many of the places are filled as registrations are currently live, it is estimated to be approximately 80%.

It should be noted that the Springboard+ part-time courses do not overlap with provision of modular courses announced as part of the July Stimulus package.