Programs & Courses

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High School

We believe high school is the perfect time for your child to start making their mark on the world. Our programs allow them to explore their interests, develop skills, and prepare for their life after high school.

Explore your High School

Experience High School at the Ottawa Catholic School Board– in 3D! With the magic of technology, you can explore your high school from the comfort of your home!

Career-related hands-on learning programs

Why should your child have to wait until they graduate high school to gain valuable work experience? We have various programs that can give your child practical experience in a career field while still earning credits toward their high school diploma.

Focus Programs

Focus Programs are one or two-semester packages of courses that focus on a particular field of interest with hands-on learning. They can give your child a combination of academic knowledge and workplace experience to prepare them for a career sector. These programs are great for students who plan to continue onto post-secondary education or go right into the workforce after high school.

Co-operative Education (co-op)

Co-operative Education (co-op) is a program that allows your child to earn credits while completing a work placement. Co-op is an excellent option for students interested in gaining practical work experience and planning to continue onto post-secondary education or go right into the workforce after high school.

Dual Credit Program

Dual Credit Program courses allow students in Grades 11 and 12 to earn high school and college credits simultaneously through our partnership with Algonquin College. Your child can earn up to four dual credits. Many students take their dual credit course in conjunction with other high school programs like co-operative education or OYAP to allow for scheduling flexibility.

Ontario Youth Apprenticeship Program (OYAP)

Ontario Youth Apprenticeship Program (OYAP) is a school-to-work program that allows Grade 11 or 12 students to explore and gain work experience in the skilled trades while earning credits towards their high school diploma.

Specialist High Skills Major (SHSM)

Specialist High Skills Major (SHSM) is a specialized program that allows students in Grades 11 and 12 to focus on a specific career sector. When your child completes this program, they will receive formal recognition to let employers and post-secondary institutions know they have knowledge, skills, and industry-recognized qualifications related to a particular career sector.

Flexible opportunities to earn credits

Summer School courses are taught over 16 days in July. It’s a good option for students who need to complete a credit, or want to get ahead.

eLearning allows students to take some Grade 11 and 12 courses online, giving them a wider choice of courses and more flexibility with their timetable.

Course types that lead to many career options

High school is a time for students to explore their options. We offer a variety of course types to give your child the knowledge and skills they need to thrive in their post-secondary destination. Choosing course types in grades 9 and 10 will help with pathway planning in grades 11 and 12. However, choosing one type of course in grade 11 or 12 does not necessarily close the door to other destinations.

Course types in Grades 9-10

  • Academic courses (D) cover the core content with an emphasis on theoretical and conceptual learning.
  • Applied courses (P) cover the core content with an emphasis on concrete and practical learning.
  • Locally developed courses (L) focus on the essential concepts within a subject area using relevant and practical activities to build skills. These courses are intended for students who need flexibility and support to meet their compulsory credit requirements.
  • Open courses (O) are designed to provide students with a broad educational base. These courses are offered in all subjects other than those offered as academic, applied and locally developed.

Course types in Grades 11-12

  • University (U) preparation courses allow students to meet university entrance requirements. Courses emphasize theoretical aspects of the subject and also consider related applications.
  • University/College (M) preparation courses allow students to meet the entrance requirements of certain university and college programs. They focus on both theory and practical applications.
  • College (C) preparation courses allow students to meet college entrance requirements. Courses focus on practical applications and also examine underlying theories.
  • Workplace (E) preparation courses prepare students to move directly into the workplace or be admitted to select apprenticeship programs. Courses focus on employment skills and on practical workplace applications of the subject content. 
  • Open courses (O) are appropriate for all students regardless of their post-secondary destination. They prepare students for further study and enrich general knowledge in a subject area.

High school courses by grade

Grade 9Grade 10Grade 11Grade 12
ReligionReligionReligionReligion
EnglishEnglishEnglishEnglish
MathMathMathElective
Canadian GeographyCanadian HistoryElective or CompulsoryElective
ScienceScienceElectiveElective
FrenchCareers and CivicsElectiveElective
Physical EducationElective or CompulsoryElectiveElective
Elective or CompulsoryElective or CompulsoryElectiveElective
Student selects up to 1 optional coursesStudent selects up to 2 optional coursesStudent selects up to 5 optional coursesStudent selects up to 6 optional courses

Choose your courses with myBlueprint

Students choose their courses using the myBlueprint Education Planner — an online tool available to you, your child and their teachers.  In addition to planning and selecting courses, you can use it to:

  • Discover your learning styles
  • Learn about pathways after high school (apprenticeship, work, college and university)
  • explore career interest surveys
  • set short-term and long-term goals
  • build your resume

Staff at your school will show your child how to log in and use myBlueprint before the deadline to choose courses. Instructions are also available in our High School Course Handbook.

The myBlueprint Guide for Parents provides a step-by-step guide to set up your parent account and link it to your child’s account.

Choosing courses if your child has an IEP

If your child has an Individual Education Plan (IEP), you can choose appropriate courses based on the support mechanisms and learning expectations identified in their IEP. Don’t worry– you don’t need to figure this out on your own. Consult your guidance counsellor, resource teacher and subject teachers to choose courses that best suit your child’s needs.

If your child receives accommodations only and meets grade-level expectations, they would likely take locally developed, applied or academic courses. The level chosen will depend on their strengths and needs.

If your child receives modified learning expectations and/or alternative learning expectations, they may be considered for locally developed compulsory credit courses. If their IEP identifies alternative expectations that are not based on the Ontario curriculum, they can take non-credit alternative (K) courses.