Note: The below memo from the Nova Scotia Apprenticeship Agency provides an update on their support for apprentices and trades workers in their pursuit of training and journey towards certification.
Dear Apprenticeship Partners,
As the COVID-19 public health emergency continues, the Nova Scotia Apprenticeship Agency is committed to support apprentices and trades workers in their training and journey towards certification. We remain open for business and can be reached by phone (1-800-494-5651), email (firstname.lastname@example.org) and through our online transactions.
We previously reported that all training and examinations were deferred. In the interim, we have been working with our training providers to provide options to those apprentices who had started their training or were scheduled to begin training this spring. This week, we began contacting by email previously scheduled apprenticeship classes and offered them the options of continuing technical training through a remote delivery format, accessing the on-line training in trades where this is available or continuing to defer their training session until in-person classes can safely resume.
We are grateful to the NSCC for collaborating with us to resume apprenticeship technical training in most trades and are happy to report that remote delivery of technical training begins on April 20th. In this option, course content will be delivered by NSCC instructors and apprentices will attend virtual “lectures” and complete various learning activities that will be assigned. On-line training is individualized and self-paced. Apprentices choosing this option will be supported through the e-faculty at NSCC.
Please note that all apprentices completing their training during the COVID-19 public health emergency will be exempt from writing the associated level exam. Instructors will still be administering tests throughout your program. Level exams will recommence for any training that is offered post the COVID-19 public health emergency. We are unable to provide group writings of the certification exams at this time; however, special sittings are available in an emergency situation.
We strongly encourage apprentices to participate in training now in order to continue to progress in their apprenticeship. The new training schedule is being reviewed based on the impact of COVID-19 and is expected to be published by April 30. We are unable at this time to confirm when in-class training may start and fall courses may have to be delivered remotely or on-line as well.
If you find yourself having some extra time, consider taking our new 2-hour NSAA: Orientation Program for New Apprentices which offers an introduction to essential information about the apprenticeship system in Nova Scotia.
We understand the financial difficulty some of our apprentices are experiencing. For those of you who are eligible for the provincial progression or completion award, we will be processing those awards monthly rather than in September. For eligibility and to apply, please visit our supports page. Provincial progression and completion awards that were submitted up to December 31, 2019 have been processed and eligible apprentices should receive the award in the next couple of weeks.
To our employer partners, we continue to process START payments. The Government of Nova Scotia has also announced support for those of you who are negatively impacted by the global pandemic, which can be found here. We are hopeful that these supports will enable employers to keep apprentices working so that their apprenticeships are not interrupted during this time.
Lastly, we have updated our Frequently Asked Questions document that is housed on our website. Please visit it regularly for up-to-date information. We have also posted information on how to stay safe while working in your trade here.
We will continue to update you as more information becomes available. Please contact us if you have any questions.
Nova Scotia Apprenticeship Agency