How apprenticeship programs operate
Apprenticeship programs are run jointly by labor and management.
The training is supervised by a Joint Apprenticeship Committee (JAC) – sometimes called Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee (JATC). Training is “spelled out” in apprenticeship standards developed by the local apprenticeship committees, with the assistance of consultants of the Division of Apprenticeship Standards, and registered with the State. The processes of the trade and the number of hours to be spent learning each process are defined.
Industry coordinators and apprenticeship consultants of the Division of Apprenticeship Standards visit establishments to determine on-the-job progress of apprentices, seek new apprenticeship openings, and discuss problems with apprentices, supervisors and employers.
The role of the state, through the Division of Apprenticeship Standards, is consultative and developmental. The field and technical staffs of the Division assist management, labor, JACs and UACs by seeking to promote and develop additional training programs, by providing technical data through research on current trends and training practices to improve and enlarge existing programs, and by serving as the registration and certification agency for apprenticeship in California. The Division carries out the regulations formulated by the California Apprenticeship Council, which is charged by law to” foster, promote, develop welfare apprentice industry, improve working conditions apprentices, and advance their opportunities for profitable employment” (Shelly-Maloney Apprentice Standards Act 1939, as amended–Chapter 4 Division 3, Labor Code the State of California).
The Council’s regulations are spelled out in Title 8, Chapter 2 of the California Administrative Code. Of particular interest are the sections pertaining to non-discrimination in apprenticeship.
Sec. 212 defines the contents of apprenticeship standards to be approved by the Division of Apprenticeship Standards, including paragraph (b) (13):
“Provision for fair and impartial treatment of applicants for apprenticeship, selected through uniform selection procedures.”
Sec. 215 provides in part:
“Selection procedures must be in Apprenticeship Committee (JAC) – sometimes called Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee (JATC), or a Unilateral Apprenticeship Committee (UAC).
The processes of the trade and the number of hours to be spent learning each process are defined.
The period of training is from 1 to 6 years, depending upon the trade. Most programs are for 4 years.
Apprentices start at a percentage of the skilled worker’s wage and receive increases at regular intervals. Starting rates are usually 35% to 50%, and increases are given every six months in most trades.
Apprentices attend classes of related technical instruction, usually in the public schools. This instruction, supplementing the training on the job, gives apprentices a comprehensive understanding of the theoretical aspects of their work. Related instruction is one of the fundamental features of apprenticeship and has been developed and accepted as standard practice in every trade. In most cases this means attending classes at night 4 hours each week, for at least 108 hours a year. The instruction includes such subjects as safety laws and regulations, mathematics, drafting, blueprint reading and other sciences connected with the trade.
In class apprentices learn the theories of their trade. On the job apprentices learn their trade’s practice under the supervision of skilled workers. Instruction in the use of the tools of the trade is also given apprentices early in their training; in most trades they are not allowed to use any power-driven machinery until well advanced in their training. Apprentices are usually required to furnish their own hand tools.
Each apprentice signs an apprentice agreement either with a JAC, UAC or an individual employer. This agreement is filed with the Division of Apprenticeship Standards.
Upon successful completion of training, they are issued a “Certificate of Completion” by the State of California.
In a number of occupations and industries apprentices receive, in addition to their regular wages, fringe benefits covering vacation pay, health and welfare, pensions, etc. Through collective bargaining in a number of instances, employers also pay certain regular amounts into apprenticeship funds, which are administered by boards of trustees. Coordinators of apprenticeship and field representatives are employed by these boards to supervise the training of apprentices in a given trade or area, process apprentice applications, keep records of progress, and the like. Where fund writing, approved by the apprenticeship program sponsor, and must meet objective standards.”
Apprenticeship programs must comply with the State of California Plan for Equal Opportunity in Apprenticeship adopted and amended by the California Apprenticeship Council on November 28, 1983, as though expressly set forth herein and shall be considered as an appendix hereto and appropriately marked as such, including the month and year of adoption.
The Division’s State Plan developed to meet the requirements of revised 29 CFR 30 is spelled out in the booklet, “State of California Plan for Equal Opportunity in Apprenticeship,” which also contains administrative guidelines for implementing the Plan.
Information obtained from: www.dir.ca.gov