Skills Ontario supports new mandatory high school graduation requirement to increase interest in the skilled trades

Ontario Construction News staff writer

A new provincial initiative will expose more youth, including more young women and girls, to careers in the skilled trades and technologies, says Ian Howcroft, CEO at Skills Ontario.

Starting September 2024, all students entering high school in the province will be required to earn a Grade 9 or 10 Technological Education credit as part of their Ontario Secondary School Diploma.

The announcement is part of Ontario’s Plan to Catch Up, a provincial government initiative ensuring students gain access to learning opportunities to consider the skilled trades and technologies as future careers. It comes as Skills Ontario is preparing to welcome students and teachers to the 2023 Skills Ontario Competition in May at the Toronto Congress Centre to showcase their skills and knowledge in different trade professions.

Howcroft said Skills Ontario is pleased and fully supportive of today’s announcement requiring students to take Tech Education classes as part of the curriculum.

“We have long advocated that students need more exposure to and experiential opportunities with skilled trades and technology,” Howcroft said. “This change will result in more students being introduced to skilled trades and technology, which will help to address our skills shortages and move more people to fulfilling and rewarding careers.”

“This is another example of Ontario’s leadership in developing and delivering skills solutions that will benefit the province, our economy, and our standard of living.”


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