Vocational Training Opportunities Scheme (VTOS)


  • To give unemployed people education and training opportunities
  • To prepare people for paid employment or to further opportunities leading to paid employment.

Applications to VTOS

  • Complete online course application form (www.bcfe.ie) and attend for interview.
  • Pay course deposit when an offer of a course place is received.
  • Enrol with the Course Co-ordinator on Registration day during the first week in September.
  • Register with the VTOS Co-ordinator after enrolling with the Course Co-ordinator.


Aged 21 or over, at least 156 days on benefit.

Eligible categories include

  • Job Seeking Allowance
  • Blind Person Allowance
  • Job Seeking Benefit
  • Deserted Wife’s Allowance
  • One Parent Family Payment
  • Deserted Wife’s Benefit
  • Disability Allowance
  • Widow/er’s non-contributory pension
  • Disability Benefit
  • Widow/er’s contributory pension
  • Invalidity Pension
  • Prisoner’s wife allowance


  • Registration takes place on enrolment day in early September
  • Completed Forms include SW, CDETB Set-up, Registration, Travel, and Childcare
  • A bank account is required


  • Retain full SW Benefits and all Secondary Benefits
  • Meal and travel Allowances
  • No course fees
  • Book loan scheme & basic course materials
  • Childcare crèche allowances (Limited)
  • Grant paid over summer holiday (Subject to conditions)
  • CAO fees paid
  • Part time work permitted (20 hours limit)


  • Commences in mid-October
  • Lodged in bank a/c on Thursday/Friday every week


VTOS is operated through local Education and Training Boards and is aimed in particular at unemployed people who are early school-leavers.


Students are allowed to remain on VTOS scheme for 2 years. If your course is longer than two years duration, you may transfer to the BTEA scheme to complete your course. The BTEA application is made through your local SW office.


Michelle O’Leary
01 629 8578.