Did You Know: Specialist High Skills Major

Did you know that Ontario now offers a specialized program for high school students to focus their schooling in a particular economic field?  According to the Ministry of Education’s website, the Specialist High Skills Major (SHSM) program provides students with an opportunity to obtain their Ontario Secondary School Diploma while preparing for post-secondary pursuits in a particular economic sector such as Agriculture, Arts and Culture, Business, Construction, Energy, Forestry – to name a few. The SHSM is a great way for students to develop sector-specific skills through experiential learning in career-related environments. If students are interested in learning about a particular sector, they can pursue an SHSM by completing:

1.      A bundle of 8-10 Grade 11 and 12 credits which include:

  • 4 major credits that provide sector-specific knowledge and skills
  • 2-4 other required Ontario curriculum credits which meet expectations through experiential learning
  • 2 co-op credits

    2. Sector-recognized certifications and/or training courses

    3. Experiential learning and career exploration activities

    4. “Reach Ahead” experiences relating to the students’ post-secondary destination

    5. Development of essential skills for the Ontario Skills Passport (OSP)

    The SHSM program, one of many in Ontario’s More Ways To Succeed in High School initiative, is ideal for students interested in specializing their learning at an earlier stage rather than waiting until high school has been completed. For many students, this opportunity will strengthen their interest in and dedication to learning; for others it will be the key to graduation and completion of the OSSD.  For more information about the SHSM program and types of Specialist Majors available, visit the Ontario Ministry of Education website: http://bit.ly/aKI0Ga.

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