A NEW multi-million euro College of Further Education campus in Shannon incorporating a national centre of excellence for aviation will form part of a €1bn investment in the region over five years by Limerick and Clare Education and Training Board.
The announcement of the €1bn investment was made at the launch in Shannon Airport of Limerick and Clare Education and Training Board’s new five-year strategy.
Setting out its vision to enhance the quality of learning and life in the region, Strategy Statement 2022 – 2026 outlines the role the ETB will play over the five years of the plan.
This includes fulfilling the personal, social, economic and employability needs of the community it serves. The launch took place at Shannon Airport and was attended by the ETB Senior Management Team, ETB staff and invited guests, including Minister of State for Skills and Further Education, Niall Collins TD, and other public representatives.
Speaking at the launch, George O’Callaghan, Chief Executive, highlighted the role of the ETB with the investment, including rebuilding communities, workforces and the economy as we emerge from the pandemic.
“The ETB’s investment in the region over the five years of this plan will be in excess of one billion euro, comprising an annual operating budget of over €170 million and an investment programme in excess of €150 million in new schools and Further Education and Training campuses.”
With the launch taking place in Shannon, he also announced a significant investment in the area.
“Part of the investment programme will be the development of a multi-million euro new College of Further Education and Training campus here in Shannon, incorporating a National Centre of Excellence for Aviation. Building on a vocational training commitment in Shannon that dates back over 50 years, the new campus will continue to progress highly successful links with our aviation partners both in the region and nationally. Our aircraft engine apprenticeship will also be expanded to include a helicopter engine apprenticeship.”
He concluded by saying, “I would like to take the opportunity to acknowledge the support of the Department of Education, the Department of Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science, as well as SOLAS who will be providing the funding for this major investment.”
Musical entertainment at the launch included a performance from pupils of Gaelscoil Donncha Rua, Shannon, who participate in the Kids Ceol programme with Music Generation Clare, one of three Local Music Education Partnerships the ETB is responsible for in the region.
An ensemble of students from Mungret Community College, an ETB post-primary school in Limerick, also performed a medley of songs during the launch.
Also speaking at the launch, Shelagh Graham, Director of Organisation Support and Development, highlighted the significance of partnership in developing the new five-year plan.
“Central to the development of this Strategy Statement was a collaborative and partnership approach involving an extensive, remotely managed cross-sectoral consultation process.
“I wish to acknowledge the quality participation of our stakeholders during this development phase of the process.”
She continued, “The significant staff engagement during the development of the strategy allowed us to embrace the opportunity to self-assess and analyse our role. This strategy sets out our commitment to ensure we deliver the highest possible standard of service to our partners and provide pathways to our education and training programmes, to our youth work and to the fulfilment of our statutory functions over the period 2022 – 2026.”