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IHSS Career Pathway Courses: Parent Training and Incentives

Published: Apr. 7, 2023Updated: May. 10, 2023
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If your child receives In-Home Support Services (IHSS) and you’re a paid parent provider, the IHSS Career Pathways program provides training opportunities to improve your skills. Here are the available course pathways with a variety of classes under each subject:

General Pathways

  • General Health & Safety
  • Adult Education

Specialized Pathways

  • Cognitive Impairments & Behavioral Health
  • Complex Physical Needs
  • Transition to Home and Community Based Living


Not only can you get reimbursed for attending courses, but the program also provides incentives to complete a certain number of training hours. You can get credit for time spent in courses and completion bonuses for:

  1. Finishing 15 hours in one pathway (you can do this up to two times)
  2. Completing one of the specialized pathways and working at least 40 hours in a one-month period for an IHSS recipient who requires those skills (one time)
  3. Completing one of the specialized pathways and working at least 40 hours per month for six months with an IHSS recipient who requires those skills (one time)

All three incentives can be earned with the same completed specialized pathway. The challenge is finding enough classes in a single pathway.

Note that the incentive program is slated to end in December 2023, so if you're hoping to get the one-month and six-month incentives, you need to have all your classes completed by May. The incentives run consecutively, so you need to complete the 15 hours of specialized pathway courses, work for one month with at least 40 hours of service, claim incentive #2, work at least 40 hours per month for six months, and claim incentive #3.

You can still continue to take classes and get incentives #1 and #2 through December if the six-month incentive is not your goal. They are working on making more classes available, especially in the specialized pathways.

Finding classes

Here is a handy guide to the different counties/agencies and their links:

It's a good idea to check these a few times a week to see if new classes have opened. (You can see the Course Catalog for more classes and dates.) Homebridge just opened up some additional classes for April. Both Homebridge and San Diego offer a few self-paced online classes that are easy to complete at your convenience, although the self-paced versions of classes are only an hour, and you get 1.5 hours of credit for live Zoom versions of the same class.

How to report your courses

To claim training time and incentive bonuses, log into the IHSS electronic timesheet portal and click on the drop-down menu in the top left corner. Click the drop-down option for “Time Entry” and select “Career Pathways.”

Submitting IHSS Career Pathways training hours to IHSS

Then, select your claim type (training time or specific incentives) and your recipient. On the next page, you can enter your course information. Be sure to include the course number and list the course title exactly as it is written, even if you run out of room. Do not abbreviate it or the claim could get rejected. Be sure to include the time specified in the catalog for your course; the certificate of completion should tell you how much time to claim, and most certificates will also include the course name and title. If the certificate does not include the course number, refer to the Course Catalog and be sure to list the course number of the specific session you attended (sometimes the same course title will have two different course numbers for the self-paced version and the live version).

How to submit IHSS Career Pathways course information for incentives

Counties are generally a little bit behind on approving Career Pathways time entries, so don’t be surprised if your claim takes a few extra weeks to be processed. You should get a confirmation email for each time entry that is approved. Be sure to look at the email to make sure it isn’t rejected. If a training time claim is rejected, review the reason given in the email. Most likely, the course information wasn’t entered correctly, and you can submit the entry again with the correct information.


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Related Decoders

Public Benefits
IHSS: In-Home Supportive Services

Related Parent Questions

How many In-Home Supportive Services (IHSS) hours can I receive?
An IHSS recipient is classified as severely impaired if they are authorized for 20 or more hours per week of non-medical personal services, paramedical services, and meal preparation. A severely impaired IHSS recipient can be authorized for up to 283 hours per month.
Can I get protective supervision for a child under five years old?
Small children generally require very close supervision whether they have a disability or not. However, age cannot be the sole deciding factor in denying protective supervision. Your documentation, including logs of injuries and prevented injuries, will be key to securing this service.
Should I hire an advocate or attorney to help me with an IHSS appeal?
Sometimes it’s helpful to have an advocate help you prepare for and present at the hearing. Your advocate may be an attorney, but it is not required.

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