Cooperative education programs (“Co-op”) are considered employment situations. Students are placed in businesses. A school coord inator evaluates and grades them on pre-assigned job duties and training tasks. The employer must pay students at least the minimum wage and comply with all applicable State & Federal laws.
Under Maine law, the hours worked in these types of programs are not counted against the hours restrictions set for youth under the age of 18. (Federal laws are more restrictive for minors under the age of 16, regardless of school programs.)
Child labour accounts for 22% of the workforce in Asia, 32% in Africa, 17% in Latin America, 1% in the US, Canada, Europe and other wealthy nations.  The proportion of child labourers varies greatly among countries and even regions inside those countries. Africa has the highest percentage of children aged 5–17 employed as child labour, and a total of over 65 million. Asia, with its larger population, has the largest number of children employed as child labour at about 114 million. Latin America and Caribbean region have lower overall population density, but at 14 million child labourers has high incidence rates too.