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P1. To provide opportunities for students to:

  • Develop a further understanding of career opportunities, employer expectations, and the impact of postsecondary education in the workplace.
  • Apply their newly acquired skills in the workplace.
  • Learn new career technical skills and workplace competencies.




R1. Work-Based Learning Program

Centers must:

a. Incorporate work-based learning (WBL) as a primary instructional approach into the delivery of applied and contextual training.

b. Implement a structured WBL program that:

1. Involves students in work experiences related to the career field for which they are preparing.

2. Occurs at employer work sites. To the extent such sites are not accessible, structured on-center work sites and off-center Career Technical Skills Training (CTST) projects must be established.

3. Relates closely with center-based learning activities.

4. Provides reasonable accommodation(s) for students with disabilities, as appropriate.

c. Provide opportunities to ensure that each student participates in WBL:

1. WBL opportunities must consist of multiple assignments that progressively vary in duration and complexity as the student completes established benchmarks in their CTT (see Appendix 308​).

2. Home-based WBL assignments are limited to a maximum of six weeks, as specified in Exhibit 6-1​. The Regional Office (RO), at its discretion, may grant a waiver to extend the six-week limit, not to exceed six additional weeks (30 additional training days), if there is reasonable expectation of full-time employment. A written request must be submitted to the region with supporting documentation, such as a letter of request from the employer, prior to the end of the student’s initial assignment.

3. Center-specific criteria and procedures for student participation in WBL and assigned staff to support the center’s WBL activities must be documented in the center’s Career Development Period (CDP) Plan.

R2. Employer Partnerships

Centers must develop partnerships with private and public employers to secure work-based learning opportunities for students at employer work sites.

R3. Work-Based Learning Agreements

Centers must complete the WBL agreement (Exhibit 3-4) with the employer when a student is assigned to a work site. The agreement must include the following provisions:

a. Blanket provisions:

1. The employer agrees to:

(a) Provide direct supervision and workplace mentors to students;

(b) Assist students in achieving agreed upon career technical and academic skills;

(c) Document student achievements and competencies, and provide an evaluation of the student’s career success skills;

(d) Provide a safe environment (see PRH Chapter 5​);

(e) Support industry-specific certification requirements, as applicable

(f) Not discriminate against students with disabilities and to provide reasonable accommodation, as determined by applicable state and federal law.

2. The center must monitor student performance and work closely with the employer and workplace mentor to provide training and resolve problems that arise.

3. The student must not displace employees at the work site.

4. The employer adheres to all federal and state laws and regulations regarding employment and working conditions.

5. The student is considered an employee of the federal government for purposes of medical coverage under the Federal Employees’ Compensation Act (FECA).

6. In paid WBL situations, an employment relationship exists between the employer and the student; therefore, the provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act are applicable.

b. Student-specific provisions:

1. The name of the student’s supervisor at the work site

2. The hours of work, length of employment or training, and rate of compensation, if applicable

3. The competencies (or sections of the student’s Electronic Training Achievement Record [e-TAR]) in which the student will be trained at the work site

4. A process for notifying the center in the case of student absence or injury

5. A process for notifying the employer in the case of student absence (i.e., winter break, unexpected student absence, center function)

6. A schedule/format for providing feedback to the center and the student about the student’s performance

R4. On-Center Work-Based Learning

Work-based learning may occur on center, with the center as the employer. On-center, WBL must be formally organized and must use the WBL agreement (Exhibit 3-4), the same used for off-center WBL. 

The agreements must:

a. Assign the student to a single supervisor.

b. Establish the length of the assignment, hours of work, and rate of pay, if applicable.

c. Specify the TAR items and other employer-specific competencies to be attained by the student.

d. Provide for written feedback from the on-center work site, including an assessment of the student’s career success skills.

R5. Career Technical Skills Training (CTST) Projects

a. Project-Based Training

Centers offering training in construction careers (and other career technical offerings that are eligible for CTST funding, as outlined in Appendix 303, Career Technical Skills Training) must provide training to students in the eligible career technical training areas through work on construction or manufacturing projects.

b. Project Planning

1. Centers with career technical training programs that are eligible for CTST funding must submit an annual CTST plan to the Regional Office (RO) annually for approval. Procedures for preparing and submitting the plan are outlined in Appendix 303.

2. Upon approval by the RO, centers must implement the approved CTST plan in accordance with the procedures contained in Appendix 303.

c. Safety

Before initiating a construction project, centers must ensure that:

1. The project has been evaluated and a job hazard analysis has been conducted by the Center Safety Officer for possible safety and environmental hazards and their remediation.

2. All students who work on the project are trained in the safety practices relevant to the hazards identified, prior to performing work on the project.

3. All appropriate safety equipment is provided to students and staff and a copy of the job hazard analysis is posted on the work site.

R6. Work-Site Monitoring

Centers must monitor all active WBL sites to ensure that students are receiving quality training in a safe environment. Center instructors and other staff must visit active work sites on a regular basis to:

a. Observe and counsel students.

b. Ensure that the training needs of the students are being met.

c. Determine, in collaboration with the work-site supervisor, what on-center activities might be needed to support training at the work site.

R7. Reporting/Documentation/Recordkeeping

Centers must document and record student WBL assignments and progress using the Work-Based Learning Module in the Center Information System (CIS).



Exhibit 3-4 Work-Based Learning Program Agreement Template
Exhibit 6-1 Duty-Pay-Leave Status Chart


Appendix 303 Career Technical Skills Training
Appendix 303a Career Technical Skills Training (CTST) Instructions for Completing CTST Form
Appendix 303b CTST Sample Project Descriptions
Appendix 308 Acceptable Work-Based Learning Activities