It is important to know that you will need a WORK PERMIT, also called the Labour Market Access Permission, to access some Education. 

Before 2021, people in the protection system had to pay non-EU Fees to participate in a level 5/6 one-year full-time PLC (post leaving certificate) course; that fee was about €3,600. 

The Minister for Further and Higher Education announced in 2021 that anyone with a work permit could pay the local fees, mostly about €200 – €300.  On the funding page we explain where you can get help with these costs.

 How to apply for a work permit

  • You can apply for your work permit 5 months from the date that you applied for protection, and the permit is valid from 6 months. This work permit remains valid for one year and then you can renew it easily online.
  • Click HERE or the picture below to apply for a work permit and for more information.  
  • If you do not have a work permit, you can apply for levels 1-3.  It is important in education that you progress each year, not to repeat levels.  You will need a level 5 or 6 in order to apply for university degrees at levels 7 or 8.

What is Further Education and Training (FET)?

  • Further Education and Training (FET) offers a wide variety of life-long education options to anyone over 16. 
  • It covers levels 1 to 6 of the National Framework of Qualifications (NFQ).
  • FET includes apprenticeships, traineeships, Post Leaving Certificate (PLC) courses, community and adult education, as well as core literacy and numeracy services. 
  • FET courses and programmes are provided through the 16 Education and Training Boards (ETB) throughout the country as well as through other local schools and adult learning centres. 
  • FET also includes online courses through eCollege – more information HERE. 
  • PLC courses at Level 5 & 6 can be used to gain entry to Undergraduate Degrees at Level 7 & 8. 

You can watch this 20-minute video which explains FET and how you can apply.

How to find a course near where you live

You can meet an Adult Education Guidance Counsellor who can help you find a course, and/or search any of the websites below.

Click any of the logos below to visit the website 

  • Type in the course title/keywords
  • At the bottom, add your county and town
  • Click search
  • Type in the course title/ keywords
  • Add your location 
  • Click search

  • Click on 'Become an Apprentice' 
  • 'Find Apprentice Jobs'
  • Select location
  • Click the type of course you want
  • Choose subject area
  • Select a location

Alternatively, look at the map of colleges, universities and guidance counsellors from the Education home page by clicking HERE.

Useful websites

  • NFQ National Framework of Qualifications -
  • Adult Education Guidance Service -
  • Map of Ireland - 
  • How to search for a course -
  • Work Permit -
  • VTOS -
  • BTEA -
  • PTEO -
  • IPS Scheme -
  • SUSI grant -
  • IPS and SUSI monthly payment details -
  • IRC Education Facebook page - (open to refugees & protection applicants only)
  • Saint Vincent de Paul Education Grants -