Apprentice Financial Supports under the
Skills Development Program
What is an Apprenticeship?
Apprenticeship is a form of post-secondary education that combines paid, work-based training (about 85% of training), with technical training in a classroom or shop setting (about 15% of training). Successful completion of both components, along with examinations, is required to earn a certificate or ticket, and become a certified tradesperson. The length of an apprenticeship can range from one to five years, but most require four years to complete.
Who is responsible for BC’s Apprenticeship system?
In British Columbia, the Industry Training Authority (ITA) is the provincial crown agency responsible for overseeing B.C.'s industry training and apprenticeship system, providing a skilled workforce for industry and career development opportunities for British Columbians.
Registered apprentices may be eligible for temporary financial support under Part I and Part II of the Employment Insurance (EI) Act while attending ITA approved classroom components of their Apprenticeship Program.
Under the Canada-BC Labour Market Development Agreement, the Ministry of Social Development became responsible for administering Part II funded Personal Supports to apprentices effective February 2, 2009.
What does Financial Assistance cover?
Financial Assistance may be available under specific conditions for expenses related to:
- Basic Living Expenses - includes only ‘basic’ living expenses such as food, shelter and utilities (water, heat, telephone and hydro)
- Childcare – to assist with the cost of supervised care not already being paid for.
- Commuting – not to exceed the maximum monthly transit cost in urban areas where public transit is available. Where and if public transit is not a viable option, commuting will be reimbursed at $0.25 per kilometre. Rates are calculated based on the mode of travel and on the distance you commute daily to and from school.
- Travel – to help cover the transportation costs between your home and the place of training at the beginning and end of training.
- Living Away from Home – for Apprentices who maintain a permanent residence as well as a temporary residence while attending training.
- Disability – for Apprentices who are disabled and need special arrangements or a device (that you are not already paying for) to participate in the course. Persons considered "disabled" are those having any persistent physical, mental, sensory or learning impairment.