Federal government outlines education investments in 2013 budget
The federal government’s 2013 budget outlines a plan to create a new grant program to help Canadian workers upgrade their skills.
The proposed Canada Job Grant would be established as part of the renegotiation of agreements with the provinces and territories that are set to expire in 2014, according to budget documents released today (March 21).
The federal government says it would contribute a total of $500 million per year under the renewed labour market agreements with $300 million per year for the grant program.
Under the program, workers who are unemployed or underemployed would partner with businesses to apply for individual grants of up to $15,000.
The funds would help pay for short-term training at educational institutions such as community colleges or trade union training centres.
The federal government would provide up to $5,000 for each individual grant with employers and provincial or territorial governments sharing the remaining cost.
The budget also includes the investment of an extra $70 million over three years to help recent postsecondary graduates find paid internships as part of the existing Career Focus program. The government estimates the additional funds will support 5,000 such positions.
For First Nations, the budget promises $241 million over five years toward the on-reserve income assistance program in an effort to encourage recipients to seek job training.
The financial plan also includes $10 million over two years toward the Indspire organization, which supports First Nations postsecondary students, and a commitment to consult First Nations leaders on creating a First Nation Education Act.