Province of Ontario

05/30/2024 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 05/30/2024 07:39

Modern, Relevant and Skills Focused: A Stronger Ontario High School Diploma

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The Ontario government is overhauling the Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD) requirements for the first time in 25 years and reimagining guidance and career education. This will ensure students graduate with financial competence and a competitive edge to succeed in their life and career after high school.

The province's plan is anchored by the launch of Ontario's first financial literacy graduation requirement and the return of modernized home economics education to expand and infuse life skills across the curriculum.

Graduating Students with a Competitive Advantage

  • Starting in 2025, students must complete a new financial literacy graduation requirement as part of their Grade 10 math course to demonstrate practical skills and proficient application of knowledge in financial literacy skills. Students will be able to create and manage a household budget, save for a home or asset and protect themselves from financial fraud.
  • The new graduation requirement would be delivered as part of the compulsory Grade 10 mathematics course to build on cumulative financial literacy learning from Grade 1 to 9. This new financial literacy graduation requirement will be developed by educators and financial literacy experts at TVO, in partnership with TFO and EQAO.
  • Students will be required to score 70 per cent or higher to meet the financial literacy graduation requirement, with the first attempt to be taken during the Grade 10 math course. Those who are unsuccessful will be able to attempt it once more in the Grade 10 course before proceeding to credit recovery or further in-school supports. Credit recovery helps students who have failed a course to successfully complete only the concepts or expectations not achieved.
  • Ontario is providing students with more flexibility in the courses they select to graduate by reducing the number of compulsory course groups from three to one. This will allow them to focus on a selection of STEM-related courses that will provide a more competitive edge in a variety of fields including skilled trades. Students will also be required to earn a Grade 9 or 10 Technological Education credit as part of their OSSD. This will start to apply to students entering Grade 9 in September 2024, and the required number of credits for graduation will remain the same (30 credits).

Elevating Math Education for all Students and Staff

  • The province is reinstating the requirement for all Ontario and International teacher applicants to the Ontario College of Teachers to pass the Math Proficiency Test beginning on February 1, 2025. This will help ensure that new teachers have basic competence in math with the ultimate goal of strengthening student achievement in math.
  • The first testing window is anticipated to be available in the fall. This timeline is intended to provide ample notice for those completing their teacher education programs in 2025 to prepare for the test.
  • Ontario is standardizing the practice, currently used by many teachers, of incorporating the results of the EQAO Grade 9 Assessment of Mathematics in their students' final math course marks. Teachers will make it 10 per cent or more of the student's final mark. This will begin in September 2024.

Building Life and Job Skills

  • Ontario will be revamping the guidance and career education policy and program which was last updated in 2013. This work will ensure guidance and career education is responsive to the way various professions have evolved over the last decade and how they will change in the future.
    • These revisions will also include the return of ministry-provided questions for student exit surveys in Grades 8 and 12 to benchmark improvement, ensuring accountability and that student voices are heard.
  • The province will set clear expectations for boards on creating modernized guidance and career education programming for Grades 7 to 12 in their schools and providing exposure for students to the skilled trades and priority economic sectors.
  • The ministry is also working with the Ontario College of Teachers to support aspiring guidance counsellors by updating guidance and career education Additional Qualification guidelines.
  • Additional Qualification guidelines will align with policy updates and reflect a more modernized guidance and career education program.
  • Ontario is investing up to $14 million in 2024-25 for career coaching to support all Grade 9 and 10 students in the publicly funded education system. Starting in the next school year, new career coaches with direct experience in high demand economic sectors will complement the work of guidance teacher-counsellors to support more than 315,000 students. In small group sessions of fewer than six, students will learn about various careers, including local in-demand jobs in the skilled trades.
  • Career coaching will be available to students, including in youth justice facilities, to gain clarity about careers through:
    • Making connections between student's interests and various roles and industries.
    • Providing labour market information about the jobs in demand in varied industries.
    • Encouraging students to seek out interactions in the community that may contribute to career knowledge such as networking and mentoring.
  • The changes will put a greater emphasis on career coaching and deliver more consistency across the province.

Related Topics

Education and Training

Learn about Ontario's early years, education and training systems. Includes information on child care, elementary schools, secondary schools, colleges, universities, skills training and financial aid. Learn more