State supports on way for non-traditional apprentices

Employer complaints have spurred the government to expand off-the-job training wages to apprentices in fields such as auctioneering, accounting and insurance

Andrew Brownlee: employers involved in these new apprenticeships wanted “parity of esteem”. Picture: Fergal Phillips

Employers who take on apprentices in newly-established apprenticeship types are going to get extra state support after complaints that they lacked “parity of esteem” with traditional apprenticeships.

The state pays wages of between €200 and €800 a week for apprentices in trades such as plumbing, bricklaying and electrical work when they are doing “off-the-job” training in college.

But there are no such “off-the-job” training payments for apprentices doing the many newly established apprenticeships in areas ...