Co-operative education, commonly referred to as “co-op,” allows qualified students the opportunity to gain on-the-job experience in their chosen professions while still in school.
The co-operative education program is available to eligible students. The “co-op” program integrates shop and related theory with practical work experience in an industrial, business, or service-type setting. Students are employed during their shop cycles, returning to Old Colony during their academic cycles.
Old Colony offers co-op placement to eligible students who are 16 to 17 years old, providing those students have completed at least two years of approved secondary vocational technical education program in the cooperative area of employment. Vocational instructors are primarily responsible for recommending students for cooperative education placement. All work experience must be well-suited to the physical, emotional, and intellectual capabilities of the students. Particular attention is given to the student’s attitude about learning and work, so as to maintain a good relationship with employees. Historically, many students who started on co-op have remained as full-time employees after graduation.
The co-op program is an important part of the school-to-work transition. For seniors, the co-op experience may begin in September. If seniors meet the vocational, academic, attendance, and behavioral requirements, they are allowed to work full-time (minimum of 30 hours per week) during their two-week shop cycle. They may continue to work throughout the school year, as long as the employer is satisfied with their work. Job site visits by Old Colony staff and student evaluations by employers are used to monitor the program.
Old Colony offers training in thirteen vocational areas, all of which participate in cooperative education. Old Colony draws students from a wide geographic area. As a result, the school has entered into various cooperative education agreements with employers from as far as Hyannis to Brockton to Fall River.
Employers who are interested in learning about cooperative education at Old Colony are invited to call Mrs. Bethany Botelho at 508-763-8011, extension 119.
The cooperative education program …
- follows the state and federal child labor law
- provides records of co-op agreements, co-op work permits education sheets
- provides written agreements between the school, the employee and students
- provides safety/health standards – OSHA
- provides instruction with information to ensure Chapter 74 regulations
- provides standards for participation standards for participation in co-op program