Post-Secondary Education, Training and Labour

New essential skills program now available (09/06/12)

NB 836

June 12, 2009

BATHURST (CNB) - A new program aimed at enhancing adult literacy, promoting continuous learning in the workplace, and collaborating with workers and employers to help them meet their workforce training needs is now available.

Post-Secondary Education, Training and Labour Minister Donald Arseneault made the announcement today.

"Workplace literacy and learning programming is essential to respond to challenges the province faces with low levels of both literacy and essential skills in the existing workforce," said Arseneault. "To address these issues we will be working with employers to create an effective and sustainable Workplace Essential Skills (WES) program."

The WES program provides essential skills training needed for adults to participate fully in today's labour force. Human Resources and Skills Development Canada has identified nine essential skills:

"Our department has developed adaptable/flexible curriculum based on the nine essential skills,' said Arseneault. "Training offered through WES will be different from other government adult literacy programming in that it will provide an accelerated learning path to employment and further learning."

The new program will start now in the Bathurst region, followed by the rest of the province in the fall. CCNB - Campus de Bathurst has been identified as a leader in WES tools development, and is being called upon to co-ordinate a WES centre of excellence for the province. The centre will be responsible for:

"As a stepping stone to this innovative program, we are investing $235,000 to train and upgrade tourism industry employees in the region," said Arseneault. "A group of hotel operators under the umbrella of Destination Bathurst are our partners in this venture. They are contributing money and providing paid work time for their employees to take the program."


MEDIA CONTACT: Marie-Josée Groulx, communications, Department of Post-Secondary Education, Training and Labour, 506-444-3465.