SHSM Policy and Implementation Guide – Forestry
Specialist High Skills Majors

SHSM Policy and Implementation Guide – Forestry

The Canadian forest products industry makes a significant contribution to employment generation in both rural and urban Canada. The SHSM–Forestry enables students to build a foundation of sector-focused knowledge and skills before graduating and entering apprenticeship training, college, university, or an entry-level position in the workplace.

TOOLS AND RESOURCES

For local labour market opportunities in the sector, see your local SHSM contact at the board office.

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INSIGHT

The requirements of this SHSM are unique and are geared to the forestry sector. However, the design of all SHSM programs follows a consistent model, described in Section A: Policy.

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Required Components for the SHSM–Forestry

The SHSM–Forestry has the following five required components:

1. A bundle of nine Grade 11 and Grade 12 credits

These credits make up the bundle:

  • four forestry major credits that provide sector-specific knowledge and skills. The four courses must include at least one Grade 11 and one Grade 12 credit, and may include one cooperative education credit related to the sector. (This cooperative education credit would be additional to the two that are required in the bundle; see below);
  • three other required credits from the Ontario curriculum. Schools may commit to including a contextualized learning activity (CLA) for the forestry sector in each of the three credits. In each credit, some of the course expectations are then met through the CLA. (Schools that do not formally commit to including CLAs are still free to offer them in one or more of the credits.) The three credits include:
    • one in English;1
    • one in mathematics; and
    • one in science or Canadian and world studies (or a cooperative education credit related to the sector, which would be additional to the two cooperative education credits required in the bundle; see below)
  • two cooperative education credits that provide authentic learning experiences in a workplace setting, enabling students to refine, extend, apply, and practise knowledge and skills outlined in the cooperative education curriculum as well as sector-specific knowledge and skills.

1. Note that a compulsory English credit is required in Grade 11 and in Grade 12 for graduation with an OSSD. Schools may determine whether the CLA, if offered, is completed in the Grade 11 or Grade 12 English course.

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See Section A1.2 for more on SHSM credits and CLAs.



Credits
Apprenticeship Training
Grades 11–12

College
Grades 11–12

University
Grades 11–12

Workplace
Grades 11–12
Major Credits
One credit may be substituted with a cooperative education credit (additional to the 2 required co-op credits)
4
Including at least
one Gr. 11 and
one Gr. 12 credit
4
Including at least
one Gr. 11 and
one Gr. 12 credit
4
Including at least
one Gr. 11 and
one Gr. 12 credit
4
Including at least
one Gr. 11 and
one Gr. 12 credit
English may include a CLA 1 1 1 1
Mathematics may include a CLA 1 1 1 1
Canadian and World Studies or Science may include a CLA
May be substituted with 1 cooperative education credit (additional to the 2 required co-op credits)
1 1 1 1
Cooperative Education 2 2 2 2
Total number of credits 9 9 9 9

Note: Multiple credits in the Ontario technological education curriculum allow additional instructional time for the practice and refinement of skills needed to develop student performance to the levels required for certification, entry into apprenticeship programs, or participation in school–work transition programs (see The Ontario Curriculum, Grades 11 and 12: Technological Education, 2009, page 17).

2. Sector-recognized certifications and/or training courses/programs

This SHSM sector requires students to complete a specified number of compulsory and elective sector-recognized certifications and/or training courses/programs, as indicated in the following table. NOTE: Where an item in the table is capitalized, it is the proper name of the specific certification or training course/program that is appropriate for the SHSM. Where an item is lowercased, it is the name of an area, type, or category of training for which specific certifications or training courses/programs should be selected by the school or board. The requirements are summarized in the table below.

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See Section A1.3 for more on SHSM certifications and training.

Four (4) compulsory
Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) Level C – includes automated external defibrillation (AED) compass/map/global positioning system (GPS) Standard First Aid Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS) – generic (i.e., not site-specific) instruction
Three (3) electives from the list below
advanced training in a technique (313) advanced training in a technology (309) anti-oppression and allyship training bear safety
chainsaw safety customer service fall protection fire safety and fire extinguisher use
first aid/CPR/AED awareness harvesting equipment safety health and safety – basic hoisting and rigging
infection control introduction to pest management ladder safety training land and forest survey skills
leadership skills personal protective equipment – forestry portfolio development project management
professional cable skidding propane safety safe tree cutting and logging sector-specific vehicle operation and safety
skidder/loader safety suspended access equipment sustainable resource management planning wilderness first aid
Working at Heights      

3. Experiential learning and career exploration activities

Experiential learning and career exploration opportunities relevant to the sector might include the following:

  • one-on-one observation of a cooperative education student at a placement in the forestry sector (an example of job twinning)
  • a day-long observation of staff at a lumber yard (an example of job shadowing)
  • a one- or two-week work experience with a member of an industry association or a professional in the sector (an example of work experience)
  • participation in a local, provincial, or national Skills Canada competition
  • a tour of a forestry industry workplace (e.g., a saw mill)
  • a volunteer experience planting trees as part of a community initiative
  • attendance at a forestry sector trade show, conference, or job fair
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See Section A1.4 for more on experiential learning and career exploration activities.

POLICY

Note that volunteer activities in an SHSM cannot be counted towards the hours of community involvement required to earn the OSSD.

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4. Reach ahead experiences

Students are provided one or more reach ahead experiences – opportunities to take the next steps along their chosen pathway – as shown in the following examples:

  • Apprenticeship: visiting an approved apprenticeship delivery agent in the sector
  • College: interviewing a college student enrolled in a sector-specific program
  • University: observing a university class in a sector-related program
  • Workplace: interviewing an employee in the sector
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See Section A1.5 for more on reach ahead experiences.

5. Sector-partnered experiences (SPEs)

Students engage with a sector partner and apply skills to gain insight into the relationship between this sector and ICE (innovation, creativity, and entrepreneurship), coding, and/or mathematical literacy.

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See Section A1.6 for more on sector-partnered experiences (SPEs).

Pathways for the SHSM–Forestry

See the table illustrating the four pathways and required credits leading to completion of this SHSM.

TOOLS AND RESOURCES

Visit the ministry's SHSM website for related resources.

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Awareness building (Grades 7 and 8)

See Section B3.4 for information on building awareness of SHSM programs among students in Grades 7 and 8.

Exploration (Grades 9 and 10)

See Section B3.4 for information on providing Grade 9 and 10 students with opportunities for exploration of SHSM programs. In addition, students considering this SHSM can be encouraged to enrol in the following courses to become better informed about careers and postsecondary options in the sector:

  • Exploring Technologies: This Grade 9 course is recommended for all students following SHSM pathways that have a technological education focus. The course provides students with opportunities to explore a variety of technologies, including forestry sector technology, by engaging in activities related to them.
  • Career Studies (compulsory) and Discovering the Workplace: Some of the expectations in these Grade 10 courses provide opportunities for students to explore occupations and other postsecondary options in the sector and to participate in experiential learning activities.
  • Green Industries or Transportation Technology: These courses are recommended for any Grade 10 student who is considering enrolling in an SHSM–Forestry program.

Specialization (Grades 11 and 12)

Students acquire the sector-specific knowledge and technical skills required to earn their Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD) with an SHSM–Forestry by completing its five required components. Students and their parents/guardians are encouraged to consult with guidance counsellors and teachers to select the courses that will enable students to pursue their goals.

Forestry sector representatives have identified knowledge of entrepreneurship and basic business practices as important for students as they prepare for careers in this sector. Therefore, it is recommended that in Grade 11 or 12 students do one of the following:

  • complete an entrepreneurship course offered in the Ontario business studies curriculum
  • pursue an extracurricular activity focused on entrepreneurship (e.g., Junior Achievement's Company Program)

Students pursuing an apprenticeship pathway should consider Ontario Youth Apprenticeship Program (OYAP), which enables them to start an apprenticeship while earning their OSSD.

Students pursuing a university pathway are advised to complete their required cooperative education credits in Grade 11, in order to allow room in their timetables in Grade 12 for credits needed to meet university entrance requirements.

When helping students plan their SHSMs, particularly with respect to the selection of courses to fulfil the requirement for credits in the major, teachers should bear in mind that technological education courses can be offered as single-credit or multiple-credit courses.

Program Pathways: SHSM–Forestry

This template shows program requirements for the SHSM–Forestry in Grades 11 and 12, along with some of the additional credits needed for an OSSD. It is provided to help guide students in choosing the credits they need to meet the SHSM requirements in the pathway of their choice. Students should always review their pathways plan with their parents/guardians and their teachers to ensure that they have all the credits they need to graduate with an SHSM–Forestry.

  • Shaded boxes represent required credits in the bundle for the SHSM–Forestry.
  • (C) represents a compulsory credit for the OSSD.
  • The SHSM bundle of credits must include two cooperative education credits, but may include a maximum of four. The possible options are noted below, and explained fully in Section A1.2 of this guide.
Apprenticeship Training Pathway
Specialization
Grades 11–12
College Pathway
Specialization
Grades 11–12
University Pathway
Specialization
Grades 11–12
Workplace Pathway
Specialization
Grades 11–12
1 English credit (C)*
(in either Gr. 11 or Gr. 12)
1 English credit (C)*
(in either Gr. 11 or Gr. 12)
1 English credit (C)*
(in either Gr. 11 or Gr. 12)
1 English credit (C)*
(in either Gr. 11 or Gr. 12)
1 math credit (C)*
(in either Gr. 11 or Gr. 12)
1 math credit (C)*
(in either Gr. 11 or Gr. 12)
1 math credit (C)*
(in either Gr. 11 or Gr. 12)
1 math credit (C)*
(in either Gr. 11 or Gr. 12)
1 Canadian and world studies* or science credit* (in either Gr. 11 or Gr. 12)
A cooperative education credit related to the sector may be substituted.
1 Canadian and world studies* or science credit* (in either Gr. 11 or Gr. 12)
A cooperative education credit related to the sector may be substituted.
1 Canadian and world studies* or science credit* (in either Gr. 11 or Gr. 12)
A cooperative education credit related to the sector may be substituted.
1 Canadian and world studies* or science credit* (in either Gr. 11 or Gr. 12)
A cooperative education credit related to the sector may be substituted.
4 forestry major credits (including a Gr. 11 and a Gr. 12 credit)
A cooperative education credit related to the sector may be substituted for one of these four credits.
4 forestry major credits (including a Gr. 11 and a Gr. 12 credit)
A cooperative education credit related to the sector may be substituted for one of these four credits.
4 forestry major credits (including a Gr. 11 and a Gr. 12 credit)
A cooperative education credit related to the sector may be substituted for one of these four credits.
4 forestry major credits (including a Gr. 11 and a Gr. 12 credit)
A cooperative education credit related to the sector may be substituted for one of these four credits.
2 cooperative education credits related to the sector (in either Gr. 11 or Gr. 12)**
May be used as (C) credits
2 cooperative education credits related to the sector (in either Gr. 11 or Gr. 12)**
May be used as (C) credits
2 cooperative education credits related to the sector (in either Gr. 11 or Gr. 12)**
May be used as (C) credits
2 cooperative education credits related to the sector (in either Gr. 11 or Gr. 12)**
May be used as (C) credits
2 optional or compulsory credits (Gr. 11) 2 optional or compulsory credits (Gr. 11) 2 optional or compulsory credits (Gr. 11) 2 optional or compulsory credits (Gr. 11)
2 optional or compulsory credits (Gr. 12) 2 optional or compulsory credits (Gr. 12) 2 optional or compulsory credits (Gr. 12) 2 optional or compulsory credits (Gr. 12)

* A contextualized learning activity (CLA) must be included in the course in schools that have committed to offering CLAs (see “Other Required Credits” in section A1.2). (Note that students must take Grade 11 and Grade 12 English to graduate with an OSSD, but the CLA may be offered in either grade.)

** May be taken the summer before Grade 11

Note: To guide students and teachers in the development of their SHSM program, schools can access the latest approved SHSM course list for each sector through their SHSM board lead.

Occupations in the Forestry Sector

The following table provides examples of occupations in the forestry sector, with corresponding National Occupational Classification (NOC) codes, sorted according to the type of postsecondary education or training the occupations would normally require.

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See Part 2 of the Introduction for more on occupations and NOC codes.

Apprenticeship Training College
  • Landscape and horticulture technicians and specialists 2225
  • Chemical technologists and technicians 2211
  • Forestry technologists and technicians 2223
  • Technical occupations in geomatics and meteorology 2255
University Workplace
  • Biologists and related scientists 2121
  • Forestry professionals 2122
  • Land surveyors 2154
  • Chain saw and skidder operators 8421
  • Logging and forestry labourers 8616
  • Nursery and greenhouse workers 8432
  • Silviculture and forestry workers 8422

Note: This information is based on the 2016 NOC. An update to the NOC in 2016 resulted in changes to the codes and titles for some occupations, and in some cases to the occupations included in the group. For more detail, refer to the Ministry of Labour, Training and Skills Development (MLTSD) web page, Ontario's Labour Market (https://www.ontario.ca/page/labour-market). (Note also that some of the names of occupations listed here reflect common usage in the sector and may differ slightly from those used in the NOC system.)

Postsecondary Programs and Training in the Forestry Sector

The following are examples of programs and training related to careers in the forestry sector and the accreditations associated with each.

Apprenticeship Training
Arborist Certificate of apprenticeship/certificate of qualification

 

College
Arboriculturist Diploma
Enforcement Officer – Forestry Diploma
Extension Ranger – Forestry Diploma
Field Naturalist Diploma
Forest Fire Technician Diploma
Forestry Technician Diploma
Geomatics/GIS Technician Diploma

 

University
Forestry Engineer Bachelor's degree
Project Management – Forester Bachelor's degree

 

Training for the Workplace
Brusher Certificate
Cone Harvester Certificate
Forestry Worker Certificate
Saw Filer/Fitter Certificate
Spacer Certificate
Tree Planter Certificate