CASE STUDY 15: Simcoe County District School Board (SCDSB) – 2018 Co-op Curriculum Roll-out

Case Study 15: Co-op 2018Cooperative Education (Co-op) plays an important role in our communities because it is a bridge between students, teachers, and employers. It links our students’ educational needs to the opportunities & challenges available through work placements. It allows students to earn secondary school credits while completing a work placement in the community.  

The Simcoe County District School Board (SCDSB) will launch the 2018 Cooperative Education Curriculum in September 2018. The new Co-op curriculum has introduced some program improvements, but the core principles of on-the-job learning will remain the same.

The Simcoe County District School Board (SCDSB) is committed to energizing the Co-op Program by renewing their Co-op Vision with input from the Community—with the goal of creating as many high-value student placement opportunities as possible

Doran worked with the SCDSB to design two consultation sessions, one for industries that hire co-op students and one for co-op teachers and administrators.

The Cooperative Education Consultation meetings held on June 6, 2018, invited employers, teachers and administrators to two separate sessions to participate in visioning and planning exercises. The goal of the sessions was to create a Vision that highlights the mutual benefits of Co-op, and to explore some of the tools and approaches teachers and employers could use to facilitate enriching Co-op experiences for students. Their input will help SCDSB market the program and appeal to a wide range of students and employers. Simcoe County Co-op aims to provide students with as many high-value placement opportunities as possible; linking them to employers who understand how the Co-op program can be a powerful talent training and recruitment tool for their business.

The 2018 Cooperative Education workshop sessions were an opportunity for the Simcoe County District School Board to engage directly with two program stakeholder groups, employers and teachers. In each case, the participants left the session with positive feelings and excitement about launching the 2018 Co-op program.

A variety of tools and criteria were developed that can be used to help students, employers and teachers plan and monitor placements to ensure that they are enriching for all.

A set of taglines and vision statements were also created that capture the value and power of the Co-op experience. A single powerful vision statement was proposed for the program for consideration by program managers and all the stakeholders who participated in these sessions.

Getting the messaging right is important part of launching and growing the 2018 SCDSB Co-op Program. These stakeholder consultations have helped the SCDSB develop the messaging and tools needed to make Simcoe County’s 2018 Co-op Program one of the best in the Province.