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03 Jul 2022

ETB and County Council launch new Public Works Operations and Maintenance course

Course to support the construction and local authority sectors

ETB and County Council launch new Public Works Operations and Maintenance course

ETB and Co Council officials at the launch of the new the new Public Works Operations and Maintenance traineeship course

A new training course to provide work-ready operatives for entry-level operations and maintenance positions for the construction or local authority sectors has been launched.

The Public Works Operations and Maintenance traineeship have been developed by Donegal Education and Training Board (ETB) through its Further Education and Training (FET) Service in partnership with Donegal County Council.

In aiming to provide the construction or local authority sectors with work-ready operatives, the full-time course offers opportunities to acquire relevant health and safety industry certification as well as qualifications suitable for roles in areas such as parks and open spaces, piers and harbours, water services, road and paving construction, and general construction opportunities.

When developing the 35-week course, the ETB and County Council ensured a wide range of general operative training areas were built into the course.

These include building garden walls and pillars; constructing and maintaining boundaries; construction groundwork skills including laying kerbs, flags and paviors; using a pedestrian-controlled mower and planting and preparing areas for planting.

Training will also cover basic safety; confined spaces; first aid; knowledge and awareness in road opening and re-instatement; location of underground services; manual handling; Safe Pass; road construction and materials; roadworks health and safety; surface dressing and water hygiene.

The provision of transversal skills in digital competences and personal effectiveness will ensure that students will have the skills to engage with relevant communication technologies and customer service interactions that are increasingly required for roles of this nature.

Speaking about the development of the course, Donegal ETB chief executive Anne McHugh said working with partners is one of their strategic themes so they are delighted to have worked with Donegal County Council to develop this course for the construction and local authority sectors.

"It’s a priority for us to form local partnerships that will improve educational, social and economic outcomes for Donegal and the development of this course supports this.”

Thanks to this collaboration effort, a key feature of the course is that students will receive a three month work placement with Donegal County Council in various locations and departments around the county.

Speaking about the council's partnership with the ETB in building this course, chief executive John G McLaughlin said this collaboration with the ETB provides the opportunity to develop a pipeline of trained staff that will contribute in a very practical way to the economy of Donegal in the public works and wider construction sectors.

"On the successful completion of their traineeship, participants will have gained skills that will empower them to join the workforce that operate, maintain and improve the vital infrastructure and public realm on which our communities depend.”

The traineeship is funded by the European Union – NextGenerationEU and starts in early September. Applicants should be a minimum of 18 years of age starting the course and should have a valid category B driving licence or hold a valid provisional category B driving licence with the intention of passing their test before the course end date.

Applicants can apply online through Donegal ETB’s website course finder: https://www.donegaletb.ie/coursefinder (course reference number 361512)

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