For the more practical minded students, looking to earn new skills, a qualification and a wage, an apprenticeship can be a great option. There is a wide range of trades to choose from. They generally take 4 years and are a mix of working and training in a centre. You must be at least 16, preferably of Leaving Cert standard and you must find an employer willing to take you on as an apprentice and sign up with SOLAS ( replacing FÁS).
SOLAS stands for Seirbhísí Oideachais Leanunaigh Agus Scileanna. Functions previously carried out by FÁS will now be taken over on a 50/50 basis by both the Department of Social Protection and the Department of Education. The Department of Social Protection will take responsibility for programmes such as the community employment schemes, while further education and training areas will go to the Department of Education & Skills.
For further details on apprenticeships, explore www.fas.ie