The Ontario Association of Career Colleges said just that in a report to the Standing Committee on Justice at the end of September. The submission outlined six recommendations to Bill 183. The proposed act will modernize the law related to apprenticeship training and qualifications and establish the Ontario College of Trades.
“The trades are an emerging area of interest. We want to make sure our voice is represented at the table,” said OACC executive director Paul Kitchin.
Career colleges play an important role in educating tradespersons. There are about 175 career colleges located in more than 50 small and large communities across Ontario offering more than 550 trades programs of study.
The major problem with Bill 183 was it left out the education and training community. OACC’s prime position is that a successful trades and apprenticeship regulatory system should be built on a trilateral partnership between tradespersons, employers and the education and training community. The report's six recommendations to Bill 183 urged the government to give OACC representation at various administration levels of the College of Trades. The report also called for OACC representation on the review panels and roster of adjudicators and a fair process for approving a training program as an apprenticeship program.
A strong connection with educators would help the College of Trades to better address skilled labour challenges.