Apprenticeship programs in California are business and industry driven programs which define a formal relationship between an employer and an employee during which the student-worker, or apprentice, learns a trade.
Programs are offered in apprenticeable occupations which meet specific state approved standards, registered with and approved by the Division of Apprenticeship Standards (DAS), designed to safeguard the welfare of apprentices.
Apprenticeship in California dates back to the Shelly-Maloney Apprenticeship Labor Standards Act of 1939. Individual programs are based on one of over 850 apprenticeable trades or crafts. The California Department of Education (CDE) supports approximately 35 Regional and Occupational Centers and Programs and adult education programs in California offering apprenticeship programs.
Apprenticeship programs are offered for a specified length of time, usually three to five years, and include on-the-job training and classroom related and supplemental instruction (RSI). Local public educational agencies partner with apprenticeship program sponsors in sharing the responsibility for RSI development and delivery.
The CDE Career and Workforce Innovations Unit staff provides the following services to support apprenticeship RSI throughout the state:
- Technical assistance and support for local education agencies, DAS, participating program sponsors, and the California Apprenticeship Council (CAC) and related Council Committees.
- Reviews of regional and statewide data collected by CDE, the DAS and the California Community College Chancellor’s Office.
- Apprenticeship RSI program working groups (e.g. statewide curriculum outline projects).
- Apprenticeship RSI program web pages, related links, and publications.
- Technical assistance and support for new and existing RSI programs in registered apprenticeship and high school based pre-apprenticeship programs.
- Implementation of apprenticeship professional development activities (e.g. annual apprenticeship road show, presentations at CAC meetings and professional conferences).
Apprenticeship programs provide benefits to learners and employers alike including:
- Reductions of business and industry training costs.
- Employees who are trained to meet the needs of new and emerging crafts and trades.
- Labor and management representatives working with curriculum and instructors.
- Certified programs.
- Programs using state of the art equipment.
- On-the-job training directly connected to classroom RSI.
- Apprenticeship RSI funding is provided to the California Department of Education through California's annual budget act. Funds are appropriated to local education agencies through the principal apportionment system based on the actual number of hours in RSI coursework. Each local education agency is capped on the number of hours of instruction it can claim for reimbursement.
- Apprenticeship on-the-job training wages and benefits are paid by program sponsors to registered apprentices.
- The California Department of Education receives no specific administrative funding for its work in apprenticeship education.
The California Department of Education supports approximately 34,000 registered apprentices receiving RSI each fiscal year.
Policy Alignment and Outreach Unit
Division of Workforce and Economic Development
California Community College Chancellor's Office