Changes to Nova Scotia apprenticeship programs aim to increase skilled trades by 2030

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Nova Scotia apprenticeship programs aim to increase skilled trades over the next decade. Photo by Ed Halverson
Ed Halverson - QCCR/CJQC - LiverpoolNS | 08-07-2022
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The province has announced changes aimed at getting more people into skilled trades.

New apprentices need to have close supervision under a journeyman which limits the number of people entering a trade.

Amendments to the Apprenticeship and Trades Qualifications Act General Regulations announced Wednesday include increasing the number of apprentices a journeyperson can train from one to two for most trades; exempting youth apprentices from the journeyperson-to-apprentice ratio to remove barriers to youth apprenticeship while still providing direct supervision; and adding flexibility for virtual supervision.

To be certified in a skilled trade in Nova Scotia someone must first work as an apprentice with an employer to receive required on-the-job training. The training is done by certified journeypersons, with a limit on the number of apprentices they can train at a time.

Employers must show they have enough certified journeypersons to train apprentices. The ratio of journeypersons to apprentices varied from trade to trade prior to this announcement.

For clarity and consistency, the amendments remove all references to the ratio in specific trade regulations, except for trades that have a ratio of other than one-to-two.

The Nova Scotia Apprenticeship Agency consulted with industry before recommending the changes.

Many sectors had identified ratio requirements as a barrier to growth and recruitment.

The province is aiming to double the number of apprentices to 22,000 by 2030 in order to meet current trends.

Reported by Ed Halverson 
Twitter: @edwardhalverson

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