Overview of CAC

Overview of CAC

Established by the 1939 landmark Shelley-Maloney Apprentice Labor Standards Act, the California Apprenticeship Council sets policy for the Division of Apprenticeship Standards (DAS). The 17-member council is comprised of six employer, six employee and two public representatives appointed by the governor, plus one representative each of the chancellor of the California community colleges, superintendent of public instruction, and director of industrial relations as administrator of apprenticeship. The DAS chief serves as secretary to the council, and the division provides staff assistance to the CAC and its subcommittees.

The council meets quarterly in different locales around the state to address issues affecting apprenticeship in California:

  • Receives reports from the DAS chief and other cooperating agencies
  • Provides policy advice on apprenticeship matters to the administrator of apprenticeship
  • Ensures selection procedures are impartially administered to applicants
  • Conducts appeals hearings on apprentice agreement disputes, new apprenticeship standards for approval, and apprenticeship program administration
  • Adopts regulations carrying out the intent of apprenticeship legislation.


The CAC is represented on the employer/labor committee of School-to-Career, a network of local partnerships involving parents, educators, business, l abor and communities in a method of teaching that prepares students for college and the job market by integrating academic studies with real-world a pplications and work-based learning experiences. Work-based learning includes job shadowing, interning with local employers and organizations, and participating in school-based business enterprises.

School-to-Career/Apprenticeship differs markedly from other work experience programs: all on-the-job training is paid, and the agreement signed with the employer is a commitment to continued employment and training upon the student's graduation. California's apprenticeship training system is a natural fit with school-to-career, easing the transition from education to employment and increasing graduation rates while giving students expanded career options.

With CAC, DAS developed a strategy to make apprenticeship opportunities available to high school students, expanding the apprenticeship concept beyond its traditional forms and participants. Pilot programs partnering schools, students and businesses introduce a proven career system, while businesses gain access to a work force of energetic and motivated young people.

Encouraging students to stay in school and graduate, the program begins preparing them for transition into selected career fields through part-time, paid on-the-job training while they are still in school. The apprenticeship agreement outlines job-specific training to be provided by employer and school. Upon graduation, the student continues in the apprenticeship program with full-time employment and further classroom instruction in the community college system or adult education until the term of apprenticeship is completed.