The number of employees who spend a time on educational leave increased from 1.551 in the year 2008 to 4.894 during the last year. – In November 2009 the number of these employees peaked at a number of 6.855 persons with this special arrangement.
(Vienna, 9.4.2010) – „Employees who use the difficult situation on the labour market during the financial crisis for their education are the winners of tomorrow“, said Johannes Kopf, director of the Federal Employment Office (AMS) in Austria. A great number of employees are following this slogan, educational leave is getting more and more popular in Austria. There was an erratic increase of persons with this special arrangement during the last year. The annual average of employees who spend a time on educational leave increased from 1.551 in the year 2008 to 4.894 during the last year, which is almost a triple increase. The number of this employees peaked at about 6.855 persons in November 2009.
The reasons for this development on the labour market are the attractive basic parameters for educational leaves on the one side and on the other side the financial crisis, because this special arrangement for employees is a possibility for the enterprises to keep their employees and give them the chance for education at the same time. For the period of educational leave the enterprise does not have to pay wages for this employees, but they leave a promise to engage this persons again after this period with the same conditions as they had before.
In the past it was necessary to be employed permanent at the same enterprise for at least three years to be allowed to use such an educational leave. This period was reduced meanwhile to a half year. This special arrangement for employees also got more attractive financially. The remuneration paid by the Federal Employment Office was € 14,53 per day before the improvement of the framework. Since 2008 this remuneration is as high as the unemployment benefit, which is about 80 % of your last income.
A further reason fort he erratic increase of educational leaves was also the special „plus“-arrangement for the employees. In this special case the employees get their remuneration and furthermore the educational costs are paid half by the enterprise and half by the Federal Employment Office. With this arrangement it is also possible for persons with lower incomes to spend a period of educational leave.
The period of educational leave can be arranged between the enterprise and the Federal Employment Office for the duration of at least two month and almost for one year. The employee needs to participate on educational facilities for at least 20 hours per week, for parents with children under the age of seven years for at least 16 hours per week.