STAP training courses halted pending review to stop system abuse


The government will not open applications for €1000-worth of job related training in January as planned because the rules need to be tightened up, social affairs minister Karien van Gennip and education minister Dennis Wiersma have told MPs.

The rules covering the type of courses funded via the STAP programme are to be amended to stop potential abuse and people getting funding to do pointless courses, the minister said. A fixed number of places per course will also be brought in.

RTL Nieuws reported last year, for example, that one course receiving government money was a two day ‘discover yourself’ trip to Amsterdam, Antwerp and Paris.

Ministers said they are also looking into the idea of focusing the budget on sectors and trades where there is a major shortage of staff, such as healthcare, education, IT and technical studies.

At least 200,000 people have already benefited from a STAP training course. Some 3,500 different courses offered by 200 providers are currently being looked at.

The next application round will start at the end of February.

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