Ontario Expands Program That Helps Students Find The Right Career



    High School Students Can Major In Health, The Environment And Seven Other
    Sectors

    COBOURG, ON, June 7 /CNW/ - The McGuinty government is dramatically
expanding the number of Specialist High Skills Major programs from 27 to 153
to help more high school students focus on graduation and a future career,
Education Minister Kathleen Wynne announced today.
    "Not only will we have five times more programs in place for students
this September," said Wynne. "But we're also adding majors in health and
wellness, the environment, business and transportation. This means that more
students can learn about a potential career and graduate with a promising
future."
    In 2006, the province launched the first five majors - construction,
hospitality and tourism, arts and culture, manufacturing and primary
industries (landscaping, agriculture, forestry and mining). This September,
most school boards will offer at least one of the nine majors.
    Students enrolled in a major are required to complete a bundle of
classroom courses, workplace experiences and industry certifications to
receive a special designation on their diploma.
    "I want to thank parents, students, employers, teachers and other
educators who have partnered with us to transform the high school experience
to benefit Cobourg-area students," said Northumberland MPP Lou Rinaldi.
"Working together we are reaching every student, helping them succeed in
school and better preparing them for graduation and life after school."
    A hospitality and tourism major will be offered to more than 30 students
at Cobourg District Collegiate Institute East in September. Students will take
courses in entrepreneurial studies and hospitality and tourism, and gain work
experience through community partners including East Side Mario's Restaurant,
St. Anne's Spa & Retreat and Loyalist College.

    
    Other examples of new majors being offered this September include:
    -  A health and wellness major run by the Hamilton Wentworth District
       School Board that includes partnerships with Mohawk College and
       Hamilton Health Sciences
    -  A transportation major run by the Conseil Scolaire de District des
       Grandes Rivières that includes partnerships with Le Collège Boréal and
       O.K. Tire and Auto Service.

    The Specialist High Skills Major initiative is one of several steps taken
by the McGuinty government to help more students graduate. High school
students are also benefiting from:

    -  1,600 Student Success Teachers who provide more individual attention
       and support for struggling students; there will be 300 more funded in
       2007-08
    -  Programs that allow students to return to a course they failed and
       complete the credit without starting again from the beginning
    -  A transition plan to help students move successfully from Grade 8 to 9
    -  An expanded co-operative education program that offers greater access
       to workplace learning and allows it to count for credit.
    

    Early results of these initiatives are promising with the graduation rate
rising from 68 to 73 per cent over the past two years - meaning 12,000 more
students have graduated. The government is on track to achieve its target of
an 85 per cent graduation rate by 2010-11.
    "If we keep working, building and dreaming together, there is nothing we
can't accomplish for our children," added Wynne. "We are ensuring a brighter
tomorrow for Ontario by putting students first today."

    
    Disponible en français

                              www.edu.gov.on.ca
                           www.ontario.ca/progress


    Backgrounder
    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

        MCGUINTY GOVERNMENT HELPING MORE HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS SUCCEED
    

    Ontario's Specialist High Skills Majors allow students to focus on career
paths that match their individual goals and interests. Students enrolled in a
major gain valuable knowledge and skills that will help them excel after
graduation in universities, colleges, apprenticeships and workplaces.
    Each major includes nine to 11 credits focused on a particular economic
sector. The components for each major include credits for:

    
    -  classroom courses such as English, technology or business studies with
       units focused on the specific sector
    -  co-operative education
    -  sector-recognized certifications such as health and safety and tourism
       essentials.
    

    Students who complete a major receive a special designation on their
Ontario Secondary School Diploma.
    There will be nine Specialist High Skills Majors offered by school boards
during the 2007-08 school year. Majors in health and wellness, the
environment, transportation and business will be launched for the first time
in September. Construction, manufacturing, arts and culture, tourism and
hospitality, and primary industries majors will be expanded to more boards
after a successful 2006-07 pilot year.

    Manufacturing
    The manufacturing major offers students the opportunity to learn how
products - including cars, clothing and chemicals - are designed and created.
Possible future occupations include a welder, machinist, mechanical
engineering technologist, chemical engineer and motor vehicle assembler.

    
    19 school boards will offer the manufacturing major this September:
    -  Algoma District School Board
    -  Avon Maitland District School Board
    -  District School Board of Niagara
    -  District School Board Ontario North East
    -  Greater Essex County District School Board
    -  Halton District School Board
    -  Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board
    -  Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board
    -  Lakehead District School Board
    -  Limestone District School Board
    -  London District Catholic School Board
    -  Peel District School Board
    -  St. Clair Catholic District School Board
    -  Thames Valley District School Board
    -  Upper Grand District School Board
    -  Wellington Catholic District School Board
    -  York Region District School Board
    -  Conseil scolaire de district des écoles catholiques du Sud-Ouest
    -  Conseil scolaire de district catholique de Nouvel Ontario

    Construction
    The construction major offers students the opportunity to learn how roads,
homes and other buildings are designed, built and renovated. Possible future
occupations include an interior designer, plumber, architect and carpenter
helper.

    28 school boards will offer the construction major this September:
    -  Algoma District School Board
    -  Avon Maitland District School Board
    -  Catholic District School Board of Eastern Ontario
    -  Conseil scolaire de district catholique de Centre-Est de l'Ontario
    -  Conseil scolaire de district catholique de l'Est ontarien
    -  Conseil scolaire de district catholique Centre-Sud
    -  Conseil scolaire de district de l'Est de l'Ontario
    -  District School Board of Niagara
    -  Grand Erie District School Board
    -  Hasting and Prince Edward District School Board
    -  Huron-Perth Catholic District School Board
    -  Huron-Superior Catholic District School Board
    -  Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board
    -  Keewatin-Patricia District School Board
    -  Lambton Kent District School Board
    -  Limestone District School Board
    -  Near North District School Board
    -  Northeastern Catholic District School Board
    -  Ottawa-Carleton District School Board
    -  Simcoe County District School Board
    -  Simcoe Muskoka Catholic District School Board
    -  Thames Valley District School Board
    -  Thunder Bay Catholic District School Board
    -  Toronto District School Board
    -  Trillium Lakelands District School Board
    -  Waterloo Catholic District School Board
    -  Wellington Catholic District School Board
    -  York Region District School Board

    Arts and Culture
    The arts and culture major offers students the opportunity to learn how
creative ideas - including theatrical plays, paintings and music - are
developed, delivered and promoted. Possible future occupations include a
decorator, photographer, journalist and stage manager.

    18 school boards will offer the arts and culture major this September:
    -  Algoma District School Board
    -  Avon Maitland District School Board
    -  Conseil scolaire de district catholique de Centre-Est de l'Ontario
    -  Conseil scolaire de district de l'Est de l'Ontario
    -  Conseil scolaire de district du Grand Nord de l'Ontario
    -  Conseil scolaire de district catholique Centre-Sud
    -  Conseil scolaire de district catholique de l'Est ontarien
    -  Conseil scolaire de district des écoles catholiques du Sud-Ouest
    -  Greater Essex County District School Board
    -  Halton Catholic District School Board
    -  Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board
    -  Huron-Perth Catholic District School Board
    -  Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board
    -  Near North District School Board
    -  Simcoe County District School Board
    -  Toronto District School Board
    -  Waterloo District School Board
    -  Windsor-Essex Catholic District School Board

    Hospitality and Tourism
    The hospitality and tourism major offers students the opportunity to learn
how services - including accommodation, recreational activities and cultural
tours - are provided to guests. Possible future occupations include a chef,
interpreter, hotel manager and tour guide.

    28 school boards will offer the hospitality and tourism major this
    September:
    -  Algonquin & Lakeshore Catholic District School Board
    -  Avon Maitland District School Board
    -  Conseil scolaire de district catholique de Centre-Est de l'Ontario
    -  Conseil scolaire de district de l'Est de l'Ontario
    -  Conseil scolaire de district du Centre Sud-Ouest
    -  Conseil scolaire de district du Grand Nord de l'Ontario
    -  Conseil scolaire de district des écoles catholiques du Sud-Ouest
    -  District School Board of Niagara
    -  Dufferin Peel Catholic District School Board
    -  Durham District School Board
    -  Grand Erie District School Board
    -  Greater Essex County District School Board
    -  Hamilton Wentworth District School Board
    -  Huron-Superior Catholic District School Board
    -  Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board
    -  Kenora Catholic District School Board
    -  Limestone District School Board
    -  Near North District School Board
    -  Niagara Catholic District School Board
    -  Nipissing-Parry Sound District School Board
    -  Peel District School Board
    -  Peterborough Victoria Northumberland & Clarington Catholic District
       School Board
    -  Renfrew County Catholic District School Board
    -  Renfrew County District School Board
    -  Toronto Catholic District School Board
    -  Toronto District School Board
    -  Upper Canada District School Board
    -  Upper Grand District School Board

    Primary Industries
    The primary industries major offers students the opportunity to learn
about landscaping, mining, agriculture and forestry. Possible future
occupations include a geologist, farm worker, forest ecologist and
horticulturalist.

    18 school boards will offer the primary industries major this September:
    -  Bluewater District School Board (agriculture)
    -  Catholic District School Board of Eastern Ontario (agriculture)
    -  Conseil scolaire de district de l'Est de l'Ontario (agriculture)
    -  Conseil scolaire de district du Nord-Est de l'Ontario (forestry)
    -  Conseil scolaire de district des écoles catholiques du Sud-Ouest
       (agriculture)
    -  District School Board Ontario North East (agriculture and forestry)
    -  Durham District School Board (landscaping)
    -  Halton Catholic District School Board (landscaping)
    -  Hastings and Prince Edward District School Board (forestry)
    -  Huron-Perth Catholic District School Board (agriculture)
    -  Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board (forestry and landscaping)
    -  Niagara Catholic District School Board (landscaping)
    -  Peel District School Board (landscaping)
    -  Rainbow District School Board (mining)
    -  Renfrew County Catholic District School Board (forestry)
    -  Renfrew County District School Board (forestry)
    -  Thames Valley District School Board (agriculture)
    -  Windsor-Essex Catholic District School Board (agriculture)

    Business
    The business major offers students the opportunity to learn how companies
are managed to develop, design and sell products and services. Possible future
occupations include an accountant, human resource manager, office assistant
and research analyst.

    Nine school boards will offer the business major this September:
    -  Halton District School Board
    -  Near North District School Board
    -  Ottawa-Carleton Catholic District School Board
    -  Peel District School Board
    -  Rainbow District School Board
    -  Toronto District School Board
    -  Conseil scolaire de district de l'Est de l'Ontario
    -  Conseil scolaire de district catholique de l'Est ontarien
    -  Conseil scolaire de district catholique Franco-Nord

    Environment
    The environment major offers students the opportunity to learn how the
quality of air, water and land can be improved. Possible future occupations
include an environmental engineer, fish and wildlife officer, land use planner
and soil treatment technician.

    Six school boards will offer the environment major this September:
    -  Bluewater District School Board
    -  Conseil scolaire de district de l'Est de l'Ontario
    -  Conseil scolaire de district catholique de l'Est ontarien
    -  Halton District School Board
    -  Keewatin-Patricia District School Board
    -  Superior-Greenstone District School Board

    Health and Wellness
    The health and wellness major offers students the opportunity to learn how
to improve the health of people and animals. Possible future occupations
include a nurse, athletic trainer, medical lab technician and nutritionist.

    14 school boards will offer the health and wellness major this September:
    -  Bruce-Grey Catholic District School Board
    -  Conseil scolaire de district catholique de Centre-Est de l'Ontario
    -  Conseil scolaire de district de l'Est de l'Ontario
    -  Conseil scolaire de district catholique de Nouvel Ontario
    -  Conseil scolaire de district catholique des Aurores boréales
    -  Conseil scolaire de district catholique des Grandes Rivières
    -  Dufferin Peel Catholic District School Board
    -  Durham District School Board
    -  Halton Catholic District School Board
    -  Hamilton-Wentworth Catholic District School Board
    -  Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board
    -  Peterborough Victoria Northumberland & Clarington Catholic District
       School Board
    -  Sudbury Catholic District School Board
    -  York Region District School Board

    Transportation
    The transportation major offers students the opportunity to learn how
vehicles operate and how people and products are moved to different
destinations. Possible future occupations include a bus driver, aviation
technician and small engine mechanic.

    11 school boards will offer the transportation major this September:
    -  Catholic District School Board of Eastern Ontario
    -  Conseil scolaire de district catholique de l'Est ontarien
    -  Conseil scolaire de district catholique des Grandes Rivières
    -  Durham Catholic District School Board
    -  Durham District School Board
    -  Grand Erie District School Board
    -  Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board
    -  Keewatin-Patricia District School Board
    -  Niagara Catholic District School Board
    -  Simcoe County District School Board
    -  Upper Canada District School Board

    Disponible en français

                              www.edu.gov.on.ca
                           www.ontario.ca/progress
    





For further information:

For further information: Michelle Despault, Minister's Office, (416)
212-3747; Patricia MacNeil, Communications Branch, (416) 325-2676; Public
Inquiries: (416) 325-2929 or 1-800-387-5514; TTY: 1-800-263-2892

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