Trades funding for Okanagan schools

Province announces trades funding for Central Okanagan schools

Skilled-trades students in the Central Okanagan School District will benefit from a three-year, $15-million investment by the B.C. government to support youth trades programs with the purchase of new trades-training equipment.

The school district is receiving $178,068 over the next three years for the purchase of equipment including routers, plasma cutters and laser engravers.

“It is critical that we continue to expand our support for young people who are interested in following their dreams into the skilled trades,” said Steve Thomson, MLA for Kelowna-Mission, in a press release.

“We expect almost one million job openings in B.C. by 2025, and we want local women and men to be at the front of the line for those jobs.”

The Youth Trades Capital Equipment Program will see $7.5 million dispersed during the current school year to school districts across B.C. The remaining $7.5 million will be distributed in the 2017-18 ($4 million) and 2018-19 ($3.5 million) school years.

Over the three-year program, more than $9 million of the total $15-million fund will be distributed to B.C.’s 42 rural school districts.

This investment in rural communities supports the recently announced “Building on our Rural Advantages: B.C.’s Rural Economic Development Strategy.” The strategy outlines the Province’s long-term vision to ensure British Columbians in all regions have the opportunity for well-paying jobs and a high quality of life in their community.

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