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The legal framework

Die römische Göttin Justitia
© Elena Romanov - iStock.com

The 1969 Vocational Training Act (BBiG) was amended in 2005. The amendment came into force on 1 April 2005. One of the goals of the Act is to ensure that young people just getting started in the world of work have full vocational capacity in a wide range of activities.

Only then can they cope with the constantly changing requirements of working life. In the old as well as the amended Act the State declared the entire field of non-school vocational education and training2 to be a public task, the implementation of which, however, is entrusted largely to the employers in the private sector and the public administrations. All those involved in vocational education and training contribute to the planning and preparation of new or modernised occupations:

  • the companies and the Chambers (employers),
  • the trade unions (workers),
  • the federal states and
  • the federal government.

Under the Works Constitution Act and the Employee Representation Act the trade unions have extensive rights of participation in the implementation of vocational education and training. The associations of employers represent the interests of the enterprises – mostly private law entities – in
which the training takes place. The federal government dictates the legal framework of initial vocational
education and training through laws and regulations. Training regulations are regulations that set the objectives, content and examination requirements for training in enterprises. These are adopted by the competent federal ministries in agreement with the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) through ordinances, which do not require the consent of the Bundesrat (Federal Council). They apply nationwide and have the force of law.

Established in 1970 on the basis of the Vocational Training Act (BBiG), the Federal Institute for Vocational Education and Training (BIBB) prepares the content of the training regulations. It develops the outlines together with experts from the relevant occupations who are delegated by the employers and trade unions. Many of the provisions set forth in the Vocational Training Act for the regulation of initial vocational education and training are based on arrangements previously developed in the course of training that have proven their worth there.