Clunker Cars Repurposed in the Classroom

New Bureau of Automotive Repair Program Sends Cars to Schools

January 27, 2020

SACRAMENTO, CA – Your clunker car could be put to good use in the classroom. The Bureau of Automotive Repair’s (BAR) new Cars for Schools program provides retired vehicles to public high schools, community colleges, and regional occupation programs, offering students the opportunity to gain hands-on experience under the hood.

"We are excited to launch this new program," said BAR Chief Patrick Dorais. "It is a great opportunity for schools to have the resources for students to get experience in automotive repair."

Cars for Schools will provide up to 350 vehicles annually to schools at no charge. Schools may request specific vehicle makes, models, model years, ranges of model years, or other vehicle specific features and may use the vehicles as needed to demonstrate principles of operation or repair techniques.

Vehicles will be diverted from BAR’s Consumer Assistance Program, which helps improve California’s air quality by offering eligible consumers up to $1500 to retire an operational vehicle at a BAR-contracted dismantler.

On January 6, the College of Sequoias, a two-year California community college in Visalia, received the first vehicle provided by the Cars for Schools program. The 1989 Mazda b-series pickup will be used by students preparing for career opportunities in the automotive industry. Several other programs, including Livingston High School, College of the Desert in Palm Desert, Fresno City College, Merced College, and Tri-Valley Regional Occupational Program, have also made arrangements with BAR to receive vehicles through the program.

Educators seeking more information on school eligibility may contact the Cars for Schools program coordinator at (916) 403-8759.

Veronica Harms
(916) 574-8170

ABOUT THE BUREAU OF AUTOMOTIVE REPAIR: The California Bureau of Automotive Repair’s primary mission is to protect and serve California consumers through effective regulation of the automotive repair and Smog Check industry. Consumers can file automotive repair complaints by contacting the Bureau at (800) 952–5210. Consumers may also file a complaint online at

ABOUT THE DEPARTMENT OF CONSUMER AFFAIRS: The Department of Consumer Affairs promotes and protects the interests of California consumers while ensuring a competent and fair marketplace. The Department helps consumers learn how to protect themselves from unscrupulous and unqualified individuals. The Department also protects licensees from unfair competition by unlicensed practitioners. Consumers can file complaints against licensees by contacting the Department at (800) 952-5210. Consumers can also file a complaint online at