Questions and Answers for Parents

Q: Who is this program for? Are courses included in the program designed for all high school students?

A: Yes. The program is being designed to appeal to both female and male students with a wide range of academic ability. It will provide a solid foundation of knowledge and hands-on experience for students with a particular interest in skilled trades and technology.

Q. Can girls do this these courses?

A. Absolutely! These courses were designed to appeal to both male and female. Already, many schools are reporting a high percentage of females registered.

Q. Is this program designed for less academically inclined students?

A. Absolutely not. This is not the old vocational education program. It is for students of all academic abilities and is designed to appeal to students of all levels. In addition to learning about carpentry and electronics, students are introduced to robotics and automation.

Q. What kind of equipment is being provided to the schools?

A. Each pilot school has received a complete set of power and hand tools, along with cutting edge industrial tools to help students learn in real work environments. Click here for a sample list of tools.

Q. Students are using equipment designed for the professional work site. What safety standards are in place in the skilled trades suites to ensure my child's safety?

A. Safety of students is always our number one priority. Government has invested more than $100,000 in professional development to ensure teachers are fully prepared to teach these courses. They have received extensive professional development on safe and correct use of equipment. All pilot teachers received training and certificates in first aid procedures. At the beginning of the courses, students receive safety training. Students are not permitted to use equipment without the skilled trades and technology teacher present.

Q. Do students spend any time outside the classroom learning in a workplace environment?

A. Many schools have co-operative education courses and it is expected that these two programs may be able to work in conjunction in the future.

Q. Can any of these courses or time spent learning be applied to a post-secondary apprenticeship program?

A. No. These are introductory courses that provide a solid foundation for students choosing to pursuer a career in the skilled trades, but cannot be applied against post-secondary training.