Back to Education Initiative

The Back to Education Initiative (BTEI) provides part-time Further Education programmes for young people and adults who want to further develop their skills.

The Back to Education Initiative (BTEI) initiative gives people an opportunity to combine a return to learning with family, work and other responsibilities. It also builds on existing schemes such as Youthreach, VTOS, adult literacy schemes, community education and PLC courses. It is primarily aimed at people over 16 years of age who have not completed their Leaving Certificate. People taking part in schemes under the Back to Education Initiative may be eligible for the Back to Education Allowance.

What courses are available through BTEI?

Courses offered can include:

  • Subjects in the Junior or Leaving Certificate e.g. Junior and Leaving Certificate English and Maths.
  • A wide range of modules such as communications, personal development, business, computing, childcare, art and crafts, tourism, catering, sport and leisure etc. which are certified by the Further Education and Training Awards Council (FETAC). One or more subjects or modules may be taken by a participant at a time, depending on availability. In some cases work experience may also be included.
  • Intensive Adult literacy and Basic Education which may lead to a nationally certified programme.

Who is eligible for the BTEI?

Anyone who has full-time education is eligible to take part in a course being offered, but priority will be given to those with less than upper second level education.

What will a BTEI course cost?

Each individual participant will have different entitlements. Those in receipt of unemployment payments which are means-tested social welfare benefits, and holders of medical cards, and their dependents, are entitled to free tuition. Other unwaged people with less than upper second level education will be entitled to a reduction in fees. The remainder will be charged fees

What will I be paid while attending a BTEI course?

Generally there is no, but those in receipt of social welfare payments may keep their existing payments. Childcare costs are also covered.

What are the advantages of taking part in a BTEI?

  • It provides participants with an excellent opportunity to develop to continue their learning.
  • Provides an opportunity to obtain national certification.
  • It provides participants with an opportunity to develop new skills.
  • Provides an opportunity for participants to pursue new employment opportunities.

For further information on the Back to Education Initiative for the North Cork Region please contact Brendan Glynn on 022-55452 or by e-mail at [email protected] or visit

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