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Virginia Apprenticeship Act
Approved April 1, 1938
FEDERAL COMMITTEE ON APPRENTICESHIP
DEPARTMENT OF LABOR
DIVISION OF LABOR STANDARDS
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The Federal Committee on Apprenticeship has received numerous
requests for information and advice on apprenticeship legislation,
and part iculirly for copies of the recently adopted Virginia Appren-
ticeship Law. It was decided, therefore, that the most effective
method of assisting the State agencies interested in such legislation
would be to have the Virginia measure made available for study.
Since the law contains all the essential standards of apprenticeship
which, in conjunction with national associations of employers and of
labor, the Federal Committee recommends, it is believed that its
publication will be of practical use to the State agencies mentioned.
It will be noted that tne Virginia law contains no provision for an
appropriation. This matter, of course, will have to be considered by
the various States ii. the light of their individual circumstances.
WILLIAM F. PATTERSON, Executive Secretary,
Federal Committee on Apprenticeship.
[The following act was adopted by the General Assembly of the State of Virginia
on March 12, 1938, and was signed by Governor James H. Price on April 1,
VOLUNTARY APPRENTICESHIP ACT
An Act to provide for a system of voluntary apprenticeship
and the regulation and supervision of apprenticeship agree-
ments; to create an apprenticeship council and the office of
secretary of the said council; to define the powers and duties of
the said council; and to repeal all acts and parts of acts in
conflict with this act.
Be it en achtl by the General Assembly of V inyi ia as follows:
SECTION 1. The Governor shall appoint an apprenticeship council,
composed of three representatives each from employer and employee
organizations respectively. The Commissioner of Labor and the
State supervisor of trade and industrial education shall be members,
ex officio, of the council. At the beginning of each year the Governor
shall designate one member to serve as chairman. The terms of
office of the members of the apprenticeship council first appointed by
the Governor shall expire as designated by the Governor at the time
of making the appointment; one representative each of employers, and
employees, being appointed for one year, one representative each of
employers, and employees, being appointed for two years, and one
representative each of employers and employees for three years.
Thereafter, each member shall be appointed for a term of three years.
Any member appointed to fill a vacancy occurring prior to the expira-
tion of the term of his predecessor shall be appointed for the remainder
of said term.
The apprenticeship council shall meet at the call of the chairman of
the council and shall formulate policies for the effective administration
of this act.
The apprenticeship council shall establish standards for apprentice
agreements which shall not be lower than those prescribed by this act,
and shall perform such other functions as may be necessary to carry
out the intent and purposes of this act. Not less than once a year the
apprenticeship council shall make a report of its activities and findings
to the Legislature and to the public.
SEC. 2. The Commnni.-ioner of Labor, with the advice and guidance
of the council, shall be responsible for administering the provisions
of this act.
SEC. 3. The council, in cooperation with the local and State joint
apprenticeship committees, is authorized to determine standards for
apprentice agreements, which standard shall not be lower than those
prescribed by this act; to appoint the secretary of the apprenticeship
council to act as secretary of each State joint apprenticeship commit-
tee; to approve, if in their opinion approval is for the best interest of
VIRGINIA APPRENTICESHIP ACT
the apprentice, any apprentice agreement which meets the standards
established under this act; to terminate or cancel any apprentice
agreement in accordance with the provisions of such agreement; to
keep a record of apprentice agreements and their disposition; to issue
certificates of journeymanship upon the completion of the apprentice-
ship; and to perform such other duties as are necessary to carry out the
intent of this act; provided, that the administration and supervision
of related and supplemental instruction for apprentices, coordination
of instruction with job experiences, and the selection and training of
teachers and coordinators for such instruction shall be the responsi-
bility of State and local boards responsible for vocational education.
SEC. 4. A local joint apprenticeship committee shall be appointed,
in any trade or group of trades in a city or trade area, by the appren-
ticeship council, whenever the apprentice training needs of such trade
or group of trades justifies such establishment.
When two or more local joint apprenticeship committees have been
established in the State for a trade or group of trades, or at the request
of any trade or group of trades, the apprenticeship council may
appoint a State apprenticeship committee for such trade or group of
trades. Such local and State joint apprenticeship committees shall
be composed of an equal number of employer and employee represent-
atives chosen from names submitted by the respective employer and
employee organizations in such trade or group of trades. In a trade
or group of trades in which there is no bona fide employer or employee
organization, the committee shall be appointed from persons known
to represent the interests of employers and of employees respectively.
The function of a local joint apprenticeship committee shall be: To
cooperate with school authorities in regard to the education of appren-
tices; in accordance with standards established by the apprenticeship
council to establish local standards of apprenticeship regarding
schedule of operations, application of wage rates, working conditions
for apprentices, the number of apprentices which shall be employed
locally in the trade, and to adjust apprenticeship disputes.
The functions of a State trade apprenticeship committee shall be
to assist in the establishment of Statewide standards of apprentice-
ship and in the development of local standards and local committees.
SEC. 5. The term "apprentice" shall mean a person at least sixteen
years of age who is covered by a written agreement with an employer
and approved by the State apprenticeship council, which apprentice
agreement provides for not less than four thousand hours of reasonably
continuous employment for such person, for his participation in an
approved schedule of work experience through employment and for
at least one hundred and forty-four hours per year of related supple-
SEC. 6. Every apprentice agreement entered into under this act
(1) The names of the contracting parties.
(2) The date of birth of the apprentice.
(3) A statement of the trade, craft, or business which the appren-
tice is to be taught, and the time at which the apprenticeship will
begin and end.
(4) A statement showing the number of hours to be spent by the
apprentice in work and the number of hours to be spent in related
VIRGINIA APPRENTICESHIP ACT
and supplemental instruction, which instruction shall be not less
than one hundred and forty-four hours per year.
(5) A statement setting forth a schedule of the processes in the
trade or industry division in which the apprentice is to be taught and
the approximate time to be spent at each process.
(6) A statement of the graduated scale of wages to be paid the
apprentice and whether the required school time shall be compensated.
(7) A statement providing for a period of probation of not less than
five hundred hours of employment and instruction extending over not
less than four months, during which time the apprentice agreement
shall be terminated by the council at the request in writing of either
party, and providing that after such probationary period the appren-
tice agreement may be terminated by the council by mutual agree-
ment of all parties thereto, or canceled by the council for good and
(8) A provision that all controversies or differences concerning the
apprentice agreement which cannot be adjusted locally in necordaiice
with section four shall be submitted to the council for determination
as provided for in section nine.
(9) A provision that an employer who is unable to fulfill his obliga-
tion under the apprentice agreement may with the approval of the
council transfer such contract to any other employer, provided, that
the apprentice consents and that such other employer agrees to assume
the obligations of said apprentice agreement.
(10) Such additional terms and conditions as may be prescribed or
approved by the council not inconsistent with the provisions of this
SEC. 7. No apprentice agreement under this act shall be effective
until approved by the council. Every apprentice agreement shall
be signed by the employer, or by an association of employers or an
organization of employees as provided in section eight, and by the
apprentice, and if the apprentice is a minor, by the minor's father;
Pro,'ided, That if the father be dead or legally incapable of giving
consent or has abandoned his family then by the minor's mother; if
both father and mother be dead or legally incapable of giving consent,
then by the guardian of the minor. Where a minor enters into an
apprentice agreement under this act for a period of training extending
into his majority, the apprentice agreement shall likewise be binding
for such a period as may be covered during the apprentice's majority.
SEC. 8. For the purpose of providing greater diversity of training or
continuity of employment, any apprentice agreement made under
this act may in the discretion of the council be signed by an association
of employers or an organization of employees instead of by an indi-
vidual employer. In such a case, the apprentice agreement shall
expressly provide that the association of employers or organization of
employees does not assume the obligation of an employer but agrees to
use its best endeavors to procure employment and training for such
apprentice with one or more employers who will accept full responsi-
bility, as herein provided, for all the terms and conditions of employ-
ment and training set forth in said agreement between the apprentice
and employer association or employee organization during the period
of each such employment. The apprentice agreement in such a case
shall also expressly provide for the transfer of the apprentice, subject
UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA
8 VIRGINIA APPRE: 3 1262 08860 0241
to the approval of the council, to such employer or employers who
shall sign a written agreement with the apprentice, and if the ap-
prentice is a minor with his parent or guardian, as specified in section
seven, contracting to employ said apprentice for the whole or a definite
part of the total period of apprenticeship under the terms and con-
ditions of employment and training set forth in the said agreement
entered into between the apprentice and employer association or
SEC. 9. Upon the complaint of any interested person or upon its
own initiative, the secretary of the apprenticeship council may investi-
gate to determine if there has been a violation of the terms of an
apprentice agreement, made under this act, and he may hold hearings,
inquiries, and other proceedings necessary to such investigations and
determination. The parties to such agreement shall be given a fair
and impartial hearing, after reasonable notice thereof in writing.
The determination of the council shall be made known in writing to
parties interested and shall be filed with the apprenticeship council.
If no appeal therefrom is filed with the chairman of the council within
ten days after the date thereof, as herein provided, such determination
shall become the order of the council. Any person aggrieved by any
determination or action of the council may appeal to the courts. The
decision of the council shall be conclusive if such appeal therefrom
shall not be filed within thirty days after the date of such order or
No person shall institute any action for the enforcement of any
apprentice agreement, or damages for the breach of any apprentice
agreement, made under this act, unless he shall first have exhausted
all administrative remedies provided by this section.
SEC. 10. Nothing in this act or in any apprentice agreement ap-
proved under this act shall operate to invalidate any apprenticeship
provision in any collective agreement between employers and em-
ployees, setting up higher apprenticeship standards. Provided,
however, That none of the terms or provisions of this act shall apply
to any person, firm, corporation, or crafts unless and until such person,
firm, corporation, or crafts voluntarily elects that the terms and
provisions of this act shall apply.
SEC. 11. If any provision of this act, or the application thereof to
any person or circumstances, is held invalid, the remainder of the act,
and the application of such provision to other person and circum-
stances, shall not be affected thereby.
2. All acts or parts of acts in conflict with this act are hereby
U.S. GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE: 1938
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