The Oklahoma House of Representatives has passed a bill that extends high school apprenticeship programs to include sophomores who are at least 16 years old. It includes a provision that allows school districts to obtain liability insurance to protect students who participate in these programs.
The apprenticeship programs have previously been open only to high school juniors and seniors. They include apprenticeships, internships and mentorships offered by high schools in the state.
Senate Bill 619 by Rep. Kevin West, R-Moore, and Sen. David Bullard, R-Durant, passed with a vote of 94-0. The bill was amended in the House, so it now moves back to the Senate for final passage.
Under the bill, schools are prohibited from directly or indirectly charging a student or the student’s parent for the cost of the insurance.
In addition, the State Board of Education now can develop rules for determining whether apprenticeships can be used as credit toward graduation requirements.
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