School District 20 (SD20) is being recognized for its trades program.
Tonight, the Industry Training Authority’s (ITA) regional roadshow stops in Trail to present SD20 with the Youth Work in Trades Performance Award.
The award honours the district for having the highest program registration in the Kootenay region. As well, the award comes with $5,000 in funding to assist the district in developing its Youth Work in Trades program.
The Youth Work in Trades program is a dual credit program that allows high school students to begin their work-based training component of an apprenticeship while still in secondary school.
Jeff Lekstrom, head of the ITA, said the region shines when it comes to getting students involved.
“They’ve excelled at engaging students and local industry. It’s a win-win.”
Lekstrom said the roadshow has visited eight regions across the province and Trail will be the final stop. Not only do they recognize the school district’s efforts but also present certificates to employers who have played a big part in the success.
“Fifteen to 20 per cent of the program is learning in school so 80-85 per cent is on the job. So employers play a huge role.”
Murray McConnachie, district trades coordinator, said the program has been flourishing for the last two decades and continues to improve thanks to the support of the SD20 board.
“We have 48 students registered this year,” he added. “School District 20 is in the top two in the province for registration.”
McConnachie said over 130 students have graduated from the program in 2012 to 2015. He said some of the graduates of the program are now hiring students to help further their goals.
He explained the program offers a wide-range of options for students in apprenticeships from meat packers and bakers to construction work and other skilled trades. And that can lead to cash awards to help further their education.
McConnachie said staff and counsellors do a lot of recruiting with the students to educate them and their parents on the program and its benefits. The result has been recognized at the provincial level.
The Wednesday night ceremony takes place at The Best Western Plus from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.