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Work-Based Learning FAQ

Supervision of Programs

Is there a limit on the number of students that a work-based learning coordinator should have at any one time?

The New York State Education Department does not set class size guidelines for courses, including registered work-based learning experiences. This is a local decision and is usually based on board of education policies and/or the teachers’ collective bargaining agreement. 

It is highly recommended that a work-based learning coordinator have no more than fifteen students per prep. This is important to ensure that the coordinator has the time to visit all sites in accordance with program guidelines. There is additional need for flexibility since students are generally placed outside of the school. Having a large number of students at a time can compromise the coordinator’s ability to supervise the experience adequately and safely.

How often should the work-based learning coordinator visit sites?

For CEIP, GEWEP, and WECEP programs, the coordinator should visit sites at least once prior to placement of students and at least once while the student is placed. For Co-op programs, the coordinator should visit sites at least once prior to placement of students and twice while the student is placed. The coordinator should also provide contact information to sponsoring employers and be reasonably available to respond to any situations that may arise.

Can students complete work-based learning hours over the summer?

At local discretion, work-based learning experiences may take place during the summer months. Students must be supervised by district instructional staff while placed in any work-based learning experiences. For registered programs, a work-based learning coordinator must supervise the experience in accordance with program guidelines.

For the related instruction, what topics should be covered?

The exact topics covered for related instruction are at the discretion of the school but should focus on success in the work experience and preparation for the world of work. A list of suggested topics can be found in the work-based learning manual

What forms are required for work-based learning experiences?

A list of sample forms can be found on the WBL Sample Forms webpage. All programs should have a memorandum of agreement, training plan, and emergency medical treatment authorization. Other forms may be utilized where appropriate by program and at the discretion of the school district or BOCES.

Can the NYSED Office of CTE review my school’s forms to ensure that they meet all legal requirements?

No. While NYSED provides some samples, these forms should be customized to meet each district’s needs. All forms should be reviewed by the school district/BOCES attorney prior to use. The NYSED Office of CTE is unable to provide legal advice or assistance to districts.

Is the school district required to provide transportation to work-based learning placements?

There is no requirement for a district to provide transportation for work-based learning placements; however, transportation may be provided by the district, depending on district policies, student needs, and availability of staff to transport students.

Are students with licenses allowed to drive to work-based learning placements?

This would be a local decision. It is advisable to get parent/guardian permission and a copy of the student’s license before allowing students to drive to work-based learning placements.

Can a student be enrolled in a GEWEP or WECEP program and get credit for hours completed prior to enrollment in the experience?

No. GEWEP is a program in which students learn about the world of work and explore career opportunities and develop broad-based transferable skills to be applied in school and the workplace. Per program guidelines, a memorandum of agreement needs to be in place between the school and sponsoring employer. An instructional staff member with either the career awareness or development work-based learning extension must supervise the experience.

How long should I keep records of my work-based learning students?

It should be the policy of the school district/BOCES to maintain student records according to the Records Retention and Disposition Schedule as outlined below:

  • Memorandums of agreement, training plans, parent/guardian permission forms, student’s time sheets and work summaries, and similar work-based learning records: six (6) years from when the student graduates or would have normally graduated from school
  • Student journals: one (1) year after the end of the school year
  • Employment certificate (working papers): zero (0) years after student attains age 21

Coordinator Certification

Is the work-based learning coordinator extension required to run work-based learning programs

An extension in work-based learning is required to supervise any of New York’s four registered work-based learning programs. The difference between the two types of extensions and the programs that can be overseen are detailed in further questions below.

What is the difference between the two work-based learning extensions?

 

Coordinator of Work-Based Learning for Career Awareness (Extension 8981)

Coordinator of Work-Based Learning for Career Development (Extension 8982)

Which registered programs can I supervise?

GEWEP and WECEP

CEIP, Co-op, GEWEP, and WECEP

What does my base teaching certification have to be?

Any 5-9, all grades, or 7-12 classroom or CTE teaching certificate or the pupil personnel services title of school counselor

Any CTE teaching certificate or the four classroom titles of agriculture, business and marketing, family and consumer sciences, or technology education

What coursework do I need to obtain the extension?

The candidate shall complete a registered work-based learning educator preparation program or its equivalent consisting of a total of six semester hours of coursework that includes study in developing, implementing, coordinating, and evaluating work-based learning experiences and programs. A list of postsecondary institutions that provide the work-based learning certificate can be found on NYSED's work-based learning page.

 

The candidate shall complete a registered work-based learning educator preparation program or its equivalent consisting of a total of six semester hours of coursework that includes study in developing, implementing, coordinating, and evaluating work-based learning experiences and programs. A list of postsecondary institutions that provide the work-based learning certificate can be found on NYSED's work-based learning page.

 

How many hours of non-teaching work experience do I need to document to get the extension?

300 hours, verified on NYSED's verification of experience form.

600 hours, verified on NYSED's verification of experience form.

 

Is the work-based learning coordinator extension required for a community-based work program for students with disabilities?

It is highly recommended since students are being placed into the community for an extended work experience, but it is not required.

Can the Office of CTE answer questions regarding certification or investigate the status of a pending certification?

No. The Office of CTE can assist you in understanding what some of the requirements mean, but the office does not review teacher certification applications or set policy for teacher certification. Teacher certification questions are best answered by the Office of Teaching Initiatives.

Labor Laws

Are working papers required for work-based learning experiences?

For all registered work-based learning programs, working papers are required for individuals under the age of 18. The coordinator shall maintain a copy of the working papers and, when necessary, these working papers will be provided to the sponsor. For more information on working papers, please visit the Office of Student Support Services’ web site.

What are the allowable hours of work for minors?

Current information regarding allowable working hours for minors can be found on the New York State Department of Labor’s web site.

What work placements can minors be placed in?

Minors may be placed in any work setting so long as the work setting is not considered a hazardous occupation per New York State or United States Department of Labor guidelines and all other pertinent labor laws are being followed. The only exceptions to this are as follows:

  1. If the minor is in a registered apprenticeship program. That program must be registered with the New York State Department of Labor
  2. If the minor is in a cooperative education (co-op) program that is registered with the New York State Education Department and is operated in accordance with NYSED guidelines. Minors in a co-op program may only be placed in hazardous occupations that are in line with their CTE training.

If there is question as to whether a particular occupation is hazardous, please contact the New York State Department of Labor for guidance. 

Are minors allowed to work during the school day?

No, unless they are completing the work placement as part of a school-sponsored work-based learning program. Students may not miss other academic classes due to this work placement.

Do the hours completed during a registered work-based learning program count towards the legal number of hours per day or week a minor can work?

Yes. Careful planning needs to take place between the student’s work-based learning placement and any other outside work placements to ensure that the legal number of hours per day or per week is not exceeded.

Do the child labor laws apply to individuals aged 18 or over while still in school?

The Laws Governing the Employment of Minors do not apply to individuals aged 18 or older. However, not attending classes to work may seriously put the student at risk for not graduating.

CDOS

What is the difference between the CDOS Credential and the CDOS 4+1 Pathway for Graduation?

A CDOS credential is a stand-alone exiting credential which is designed to measure achievement of the CDOS learning standards. The CDOS credential alone is not a high school diploma. Beginning in June 2016, the CDOS credential requirements may be utilized as a 4+1 pathway for graduation. A Regents Diploma using the 4+1 CDOS pathway is considered a high school diploma.

How can a student earn a CDOS credential?

There are two options by which a student may earn a CDOS credential:

Option 1:

The student must meet each of the following requirements:

  1. Development of a Career Plan
  2. Demonstrated achievement of the commencement level CDOS learning standards 1, 2, and 3a:
  3. Successful completion of at least 216 hours of CTE coursework and/or work-based learning experiences (of which at least 54 hours must be in work-based learning experiences)
  4. At least one employability profile, completed within one year prior to student's exit from high school

Option 2

The student must meet the requirements for one of the Department-Approved Pathway Assessments in Career Development and Occupational Studies.

How can a student earn work-based learning hours towards CDOS Option 1?

A student may earn work-based learning hours through any of the registered or unregistered options outlined in the work-based learning manual.

Is there a state format for a career plan?

No. However, NYSED has developed a sample career plan template.

Is there a state format for an employability profile?

No. However, NYSED has developed a sample employability skills template. Please note that this sample would not be acceptable for a NYSED-approved CTE program since it does not contain technical skills. Guidance on creating an employability profile for a NYSED-approved CTE program can be found on the New York State Education Department’s CTE Program Approval Page.

My student has a part time job outside of school. Can that count as work-based learning hours for CDOS?

The answer would be no unless the school has a registered GEWEP or WECEP program which is overseen by an instructional staff member or school counselor holding either work-based learning extension. The coordinator would need to follow program guidelines for GEWEP or WECEP before employment may count towards work-based learning hours.

Can the Office of CTE answer questions regarding graduation requirements for CDOS?

No. These questions are best directed to the Office of Curriculum and Instruction. The Office of CTE can only answer questions regarding the career and technical education and work-based learning components of the CDOS credential.

Can the Office of CTE answer questions related to Individualized Education Plans (IEPs), Section 504 plans, or the Skills and Achievement Credential?

No. These questions are best directed to the Office of Special Education Policy Unit at speced@nysed.gov.

Where can I find answers to other questions that I may have concerning the CDOS commencement credential?

The department has developed a question-and-answer document which provides answers to many questions.