GUIDANCE

Welcome to the
St. Mary Catholic Secondary School
Guidance Department

The Guidance Department Counsellors provide assistance for educational choices, career-related and personal issues. Through academic counselling, consultation with parent(s)/guardian(s) and working with community organizations, the staff in Guidance, Student Success and Co-operative Education Departments are committed to helping students work toward their graduation requirements.

Counselling is given in the following areas:

  • Appropriate high school course choices and resolution of timetable problems

  • Difficulties in learning, studying, or time management

  • Educational plans appropriate to abilities, interests, and goals

  • College or university choices and the post-secondary application process

  • Financial assistance (O.S.A.P.), scholarships, etc.

  • Information and registration about summer school courses, e-learning and night school co-operative education

  • Information about the six Specialist High Skills Majors available to students in grades 11 and 12

  • Information about Dual Credits available at St. Mary

  • Student Resource Team (S.R.T.) meetings can be arranged any time for parents to discuss their child’s academic progress

  • Graduation

  • Community service opportunities

  • Registrations

  • Liaise with our family of schools

  • Ontario Student Records, Transcripts

  • To help identify at-risk students and ensure that programs are put in place to match these students’ needs working in conjunction with Student Success and Special Education Department staff, outside agencies, the Board Attendance Counsellor, our School Social Worker, Chaplain and our Administrative Team.


St. Mary Catholic Secondary School Guidance Department will help students become aware of the need to:

  • develop as an individual

  • develop as a contributing member to their community

  • develop an awareness of the post-secondary opportunities available to them in a diverse and changing world


Students at St. Mary Catholic Secondary School will have the opportunity to participate in:

Students are encouraged to speak to the Guidance and Co-operative Education staff annually so they are informed of the opportunities offered.

Guidance Staff Contact Information

Guidance staff are available to students on a regular basis to help students answer questions about course selection, post-secondary opportunities and volunteer opportunities.

If you would like to get in touch with a Guidance staff member, please contact them through the email addresses or extensions below.

Main School Phone Number: 905-372-4339

Guidance Office Staff:

Co-operative Education Staff:
Co-operative Education Staff are available to speak to students about Co-operative Education opportunities and OYAP (Ontario Youth Apprenticeship Program) opportunities that exist in the local community.

Guidance Appointments


  1. Please sign up using your phone by scanning the QR on the poster or using the link below.

  2. Fill out the Google Form with your first and last name and a Guidance Counsellor will contact you to come to Guidance.

Google Form Link: Appointment Booking Link

NEW RegistraTIONS

To register visit the Admissions and Registration page
for
more information and to download a registration package.

Ontario Student Records (OSR) & Transcripts (OST)

Ontario Student Records and Ontario Student Transcripts are standardized methods to track and document students' academic progress.


Ontario Student Records (OSR)

The Ontario Student Record (OSR) is the record of a student's educational progress through schools in Ontario. Section 265(d) of the Education Act requires a principal of a school “to collect information for the inclusion in a record in respect of each pupil enrolled in the school and to establish, maintain, retain, transfer and dispose of the record”.

By law and according to Regulation 38/73 of the Ministry of Education, Ontario Student Records (OSR) are maintained at the school.


Ontario Student Transcripts (OST)

To request a transcript for post-secondary applications or employment purposes, you can fill out the Transcript Request form, email the Guidance Secretary or call 905-372-4339, ext. 256.

The Ontario Student Transcript (OST) is a record of credits attempted and completed.

The OST:

    • records all Grade 9 and 10 courses successfully completed by the student, with percentage grades obtained and credits earned

    • records all Grade 11 and 12 courses completed or attempted by the student, with percentage grades obtained and credits earned. (An exception to this is for Grade 12 students who, with the Principal's permission, delete a course within 5 school days of a mid-term report being issued)

    • identifies compulsory credits, including credits that are substitutions for compulsory credits identified by the Ministry as diploma requirements

    • confirms whether the student has completed 40 hours of Community Involvement and whether the student has successfully completed the provincial secondary school literacy test

    • includes any records of achievement for exceptional students

For additional information about the OSR or OST documents, you can contact the school's Administration.



Course Selection

2022-2023 Course Selection

  • Students will begin their course selection for the following school year in February using myBlueprint.

  • During that time students will have the opportunity to work with a Guidance Counsellor to help determine which pathway is best for them using the 2022-23 Prerequisite Flow Chart and 2022-23 Course Descriptions document.

  • Student are encouraged to also research post-secondary programs early in high school to ensure their pathway meets their desired post-secondary goals.



    Grade 10 Planner (grade 9s going into 10)
    Grade 11 Planner (grade 10s going into 11)
    Grade 12 Planner (grade 11s going into 12)

myBlueprint Education Planner

myBlueprint Education Planner


myBlueprint is comprehensive education and career/life planning program with the tools students need to make the most informed decisions about their future.

Discover yourself

Five comprehensive Who Am I assessments help students discover their learning and personality styles, interests, desired knowledge, and motivation factors. Job specific compatibility surveys unlock powerful occupation matches based on real-world tasks to better inform student self-discovery.

Track towards graduation and beyond

The high school course planner (with optional Student Information System (SIS) integration) allows students to visually plan towards province-specific graduation requirements while instantly discovering their eligibility for every post-secondary pathway in Canada.

Explore your opportunities

Backward or forward planning with the most comprehensive post-secondary and career databases. Search, filter, and compare local, province-specific information on apprenticeships, programs, and occupations to ensure students make better decisions and are more prepared for the future.

Record and share what matters

Keep track of important experiences, activities, achievements, skills, community service hours and more with highly configurable resume and cover letter builders. Classroom, core competency, or career portfolios (to name a few) help convey student learning with documents, images, videos, and more. Students can then easily share an interactive portfolio link with others.

Learn real world skills

Understand the basics of money management and improve your financial literacy with actionable budgets, learn how to set and track towards SMART goals, and discover what local employers are looking for with job search tools that provide local, up-to-date listings tied directly to your occupations of interest.

Grade 9 Information - under construction

2022-2023 Course Selection

  • Students will begin their course selection for the following school year in February using myBlueprint.

  • During that time students will have the opportunity to work with a Guidance Counsellor to help determine which pathway is best for them using the 2022-23 Prerequisite Flow Chart and 2022-23 Course Descriptions document.

  • Student are encouraged to also research post-secondary programs early in high school to ensure their pathway meets their desired post-secondary goals.

    Grade 10 Planner (grade 9s going into 10)

Grade 10 Information - under construction

2022-2023 Course Selection

  • Students will begin their course selection for the following school year in February using myBlueprint.

  • During that time students will have the opportunity to work with a Guidance Counsellor to help determine which pathway is best for them using the 2022-23 Prerequisite Flow Chart and 2022-23 Course Descriptions document.

  • Student are encouraged to also research post-secondary programs early in high school to ensure their pathway meets their desired post-secondary goals.

    Grade 11 Planner (grade 10s going into 11)

Grade 11 Information - under construction

2022-2023 Course Selection

  • Students will begin their course selection for the following school year in February using myBlueprint.

  • During that time students will have the opportunity to work with a Guidance Counsellor to help determine which pathway is best for them using the 2022-23 Prerequisite Flow Chart and 2022-23 Course Descriptions document.

  • Student are encouraged to also research post-secondary programs early in high school to ensure their pathway meets their desired post-secondary goals.

    Grade 12 Planner (grade 11s going into 12)

GRADUATION REQUIREMENTS

Graduation Requirements

The Ontario Ministry of Education determines our Catholic secondary school curriculum expectations by grade or subject/course. You can view Ontario curriculum expectations for grades 9 to 12 by visiting the
Ontario Ministry of Education.

Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD)

The following are the requirements for obtaining an Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD).


Students are required to complete 30 credits.

NOTE: All students who choose to attend St. Mary Catholic Secondary School are required to take a minimum of one credit in Religious Studies per year from grade 9 to 12, in order to qualify for formal graduation. The courses of study for these credits are adapted from guidelines for our Catholic school community and listed in course selections. The completed courses appear on the Ontario Student Transcript as credits.

40 Hours of Community Involvement

PLEASE NOTE:

For students who are graduating in the 2021-2022 school year, the Ministry of Education reduced the graduation requirement to a minimum of 20 hours of community involvement activities.

The community involvement graduation requirement of 40 hours will be restored in 2022-2023. Students working towards their OSSD should make sure they meet these graduation requirements in time for their graduating year.


_________________________

As stated in Ontario Secondary Schools, Grade 9 to 12: Program and Diploma Requirements all students in Ontario secondary schools must complete a minimum of 40 hours of community involvement activities as part of the requirements for an Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD). As of July 1, 2011, students will be able to start accumulating community involvement hours in the summer before they enter grade 9. The purpose of the community involvement requirement is to encourage students to develop an awareness and understanding of civic responsibility and of the role they can play in supporting and strengthening their communities.


PLAN Students under the age of eighteen should plan an activity in consultation with their parent(s)/guardian(s). The activity must fall within the guiding principles the Board has established (see list of examples on the back of the Community Service Form).


GET APPROVAL If the activity is not on the Board’s list of examples, the student must get approval from their principal or school designate (Guidance Counsellor) prior to the completion of the hours. If completed without permission and permission is subsequently denied, the activity or event will not be counted toward the student’s community involvement requirement.


DOCUMENT Upon completion of the planned activity, students should have the supervisor of the activity print their name and sign in the designated area of the form. Students must make sure the form is completely filled in including a parent/ guardian signature.


SUBMIT TO GUIDANCE Students must bring completed form to Guidance. Hours will then be added to their graduation requirements. If a student completes their 40 hours before the end of June in their grade 10 year, they will receive a Certificate of Recognition at the beginning of grade 11 recognizing their efforts. The principal may request your form at any time.


The Community Involvement form must be completed and submitted to Guidance by April of the year a student plans to graduate.

Grade 10 Literacy Test

In Grade 10, students take the Ontario Secondary School Literacy Test, which measures whether or not they are meeting the minimum standard for literacy across all subjects up to the end of Grade 9.


Successful completion of the literacy test is one of the 32 requirements students must meet to earn an Ontario Secondary School Diploma. The secondary school literacy requirement is described in the Ministry of Education’s Ontario Schools, Kindergarten to Grade 12: Policy and Program Requirements, 2011.

pOST-SECONDARY

All students considering applying to college or university for their post-secondary destination are encouraged to consult with a Guidance Counsellor through their Grade 11 and Grade 12 year. This is important to ensure the courses they are taking are prerequisite courses or courses required for admissions to the post-secondary program of their choice.


Apprenticeship/Trades

Students considering the Ontario Youth Apprenticeship Program are encouraged to speak with Mr. McDonell during the course selection process in their Grade 11 year. OYAP is an application and interview based process. Students selected for this program will participate in the OYAP program during semester 2 of their Grade 12 year.

The following sites are used to research Ontario Youth Apprenticeship information and apprenticeship opportunities:



CTAO - Construction Training and Apprenticeship Ontario

What is CTAO?

Ctaontario.com is an easy-to-navigate website that provides educational tools and materials for visitors to explore the Unionized Construction Skilled trades available in Ontario. Each trade has a designated landing page that outlines the entrance requirements and average wage.


How can it benefit you

CTAOntario.com is a guide for those interested in entering the skilled construction trades, and is useful for anyone looking to learn more about them. CTAO provides an easy to use site for someone looking to enter a construction trade. Working with Apprenticeship Coordinators and Training Delivery Agents across the province, we have gathered Ontario-specific information that is current and up to date with the sector. CTAO features 30 construction trades and is a premier starting point for future tradespeople and the general public to learn about the construction skilled trades.

Here is a link to a quick video showing how to take advantage of this industry tool.

https://vimeo.com/635571900


CTAO is a useful tool for parents, educators, and employment Ontario service providers. We invite you to visit https://ctaontario.com/ to learn more and build your profile today.


https://www.instagram.com/ctaont/

https://twitter.com/CTAOnt

https://www.facebook.com/ctaont


Ontario College Admission Requirements

To be eligible to apply to college, a student must successfully complete the requirements of the Ontario Secondary School Diploma, OSSD. These requirements include; the Ontario Secondary School Literacy Requirement and 40 hours of Community Involvement. Students are encouraged to have both requirements completed prior to their Grade 12 year. All students applying to college must complete ENG4C including the majority of their Grade 11 and Grade 12 credits at the College, College/University or University level.

**It is the responsibility of student applying to college to regularly check admission requirements (both academic and non-academic) and grade requirements for their post-secondary program of choice.**

Grade 12 students will participate in an information session to help them begin the application process. Ultimately, it is the responsibility of the student, along with parent(s)/guardian(s) to select program choices and pay for the application prior to the deadline.

The following sites are used to research and apply to college programs:


Ontario University Admission Requirements

To be eligible to apply to university, a student must successfully complete the requirements of the Ontario Secondary School Diploma, OSSD. These requirements include; the Ontario Secondary School Literacy requirement and 40 hours of Community Involvement. Students are encouraged to have both requirements completed prior to their Grade 12 year. All students applying to university are required to have completed 6 Grade 12 U or M level credits including ENG4U.

*It is the responsibility of the student applying to university to regularly check admission requirements (both academic and non-academic) and grade requirements for their post-secondary program of choice.*

Grade 12 students will participate in an information session to help them begin the application process. Ultimately, it is the responsibility of the student, along with parent(s)/guardian(s) to select program choices and pay for the application prior to the deadline.

The following sites are used to research and apply to university programs:

FINANCIAL AID

FINANCING YOUR POST-SECONDARY EDUCATION:

Students applying to post-secondary education opportunities should consider all scholarships, bursaries and/or awards for which they are qualified. Students are encouraged to use the following sites to review all scholarship and bursary opportunities available to them.

RESOURCES:

  • scholartree.ca

  • scholarshipscanada.com

  • osap.ca

  • SMCSS Graduation and Community Awards

  • Ontario University and College Financial Aid Offices

  • BMO - Bank of Montreal - Information on student lines of credit.

  • Campus Access - CampusAccess.com is a comprehensive resource and information guide for current/prospective university and college students.

  • Canada Education Savings Grant - The Canada Education Savings Grant (CESG) provides grants to Registered Education Savings Plan (RESP) contributors until the beneficiaries reach the age of 17.

  • Career Colleges - Career Colleges offers a comprehensive directory of colleges, universities and online schools. They also offer a scholarship search tool.

  • CIBC - Information on student lines of credit.

  • ElectronicInfo - Scholarships for all Ontario Universities. You can use this site to compare programs and degrees, find information about universities and admission requirements, search for scholarships, locate each university on the map of Ontario, learn about university-related events that will also help you make your decision, and more.

  • Finaid - The Smart Student Guide to Financial Aid - This award-winning site has grown into the most comprehensive source of student financial aid information, advice and tools -- on or off the web.

  • Ministry of Education List of Scholarships/Loans and Grants - This web site lists all programs/bursaries/loans/grants/benefits/scholarships administered by OSAP. Programs and procedures change from year to year, so please ensure you select your academic year first.

  • National Student Loans Service Centre - Find the information and tools you need to apply for, manage and repay your student loan. Also find contact information for provincial and territorial Student Assistance offices.

  • OCAS - Ontario Colleges.ca - This site is intended as a reference for applicants on application procedures and important dates, college area of study guide, scholarship information and admission requirements.

  • OSCA - Ontario School Counsellor's Association - A website designed for Guidance Counsellors but contains information on scholarships.

  • RBC - Royal Bank of Canada - Information on student lines of credit.

  • Scholarships.com - This website provides a searchable database containing scholarship information for Canadian students.

  • Scholarships Canada - ScholarshipsCanada.com is a searchable database of several thousand scholarships, prizes, and bursaries for students entering their first year of post-secondary studies in Canada. It includes both school-administered and private awards.

  • School Finder - Search this collection of scholarships, bursaries, and information to learn about your financing options, and how to apply for scholarships and loans. They also have a long list of College and University Open Houses.

  • Scotiabank - Information on student lines of credit.

  • Student Awards - Find information on scholarships, bursaries, fellowships and other financial awards that are available for students. Other features include email notification of new awards, a pre-written letter for award administrators and valuable financial tips. Register with them to help find money for school.

  • Toronto Dominion Bank - Information on student lines of credit.

Community Involvement

Please visit the Community Involvement page for more detailed information.

Download a Community Involvement Hours Form here.

DUAL CREDITS

Through the Student Success initiative, Ontario secondary schools are offering expanded programs to help meet students’ individual learning styles and interests. These programs allow students to customize their high school experience through a variety of new and enhanced learning options. These options include Dual Credits, Specialist High Skills Majors and Cooperative Education. These programs help to meet the needs, interests and strengths of all students, engaging them in learning and better preparing them for graduation and beyond.

Dual credit programs are ministry-approved programs that allow students, while they are still in secondary school, to take college or apprenticeship courses that count towards both the Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD) and a postsecondary certificate, diploma, degree or a Certificate of Apprenticeship.

St. Mary offers several courses in partnership with Durham, Fleming and Loyalist Colleges.
These courses are listed on the
2022-23 Pre-requisite Flow-Chart.

For more information contact Guidance.

Dual Credit Ministry of Education Information Document

Student Success

The transition from elementary to secondary school is among the most challenging periods of adolescence. Effective transition planning to secondary school begins for all students in Grade 7 and continues into and sometimes beyond Grade 9. A smooth transition contributes to a strong foundation for success in secondary school and beyond.


Elementary and secondary schools work collaboratively to develop strategies that support student planning for successful transitions from elementary to secondary school. Secondary Student Success teachers visit Grade 7 and 8 classrooms to provide students with information about the Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD) requirements, specialized programs, extracurricular activities, strategies for completing the community involvement requirement, post secondary opportunities, and the education and career/life planning process.


All secondary schools have a Link Crew program. Grade 11 and 12 students who are members of the Link Crew provide robust Orientation sessions for new students on the first day of school. The Link Crew continues to support new students both academically and socially throughout their grade nine year.


Additional resources and supports are provided to students who face additional challenges as they embark on the Grade 8 - 9 transition process. At transition interviews held at the elementary school, a Student Success Transition Interview Form is completed for students considered "at risk"; this form outlines the supports required as the student moves from elementary to secondary school. When the student reaches secondary school, the Student Success team provides the support required.


For more information, please contact Mrs. Lowry, Student Success Teacher.