SWAF Frequently Asked Questions
Why should I get my high school diploma?
Earning your high school diploma, or Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD), shows that you can achieve long-term goals. It also shows that you are capable of managing deadlines and completing specific tasks. Furthermore, obtaining your OSSD can be a stepping-stone to apprenticeship, college, university programs or promotions within the workplace.
How do I know if I can participate in the SWAF – School Within A Factory program?
This program is open to adults (18yrs+) employed full-time in manufacturing or production who wish to earn their high school diploma. Also, graduates can upgrade courses or acquire prerequisite courses for university/college/apprenticeship programs.
How does the SWAF program work?
- At your first meeting, your SWAF teacher will review your transcript and other educational documents to develop an educational plan specific to you.
- Once enrolled, you will complete independent learning credit courses while receiving one-to-one in-class support.
- The SWAF classroom is a place for students to pick-up and drop-off coursework, complete in-class components of their courses and get help from the teachers. Additionally, students are also welcome to use the SWAF classroom as a quiet place to do their coursework.
How can I sign-up for the SWAF program?
SWAF – Guelph
Jennifer Watson, SWAF Teacher
SWAF – Mount Forest, Arthur, Palmerston
North Wellington Centre for Continuing Education
(519) 323-4840 *ask specifically for SWAF information
SWAF – Shelburne, Orangeville
Dufferin Centre for Continuing Education
(519) 941-2661 *ask specifically for SWAF information
What if my shift work schedule conflicts with the SWAF classroom hours?
SWAF classroom hours meet the needs of most shift-work schedules. Alternate day and evening hours may be available by appointment only. Additionally, students are expected to work independently on weeks they are not able to meet with a SWAF teacher.
When can I sign up for this program?
The SWAF program is continuous-enrollment, meaning that you can begin the program at any time from September to June.
If English is my second language, do I need a specific Canadian Language Benchmark assessment level to participate in the SWAF program?
Yes, documentation is required indicating that you have the Canadian Language Benchmark level 6 or 7 to begin the SWAF program (exceptions may be granted if documentation indicates extensive educational training with English instruction).
What do I need to bring to my enrollment meeting?
You should bring your educational transcript/document(s) from any province or country and one piece of photo ID. If you are unable to provide educational documents, please do not worry; an educational plan can still be created at the meeting.
How long will it take to earn my high school diploma?
The amount of time required to earn your high school diploma will vary based on your educational plan created at the time of your enrollment meeting and the pace that you are able to complete courses while balancing work, family and other responsibilities.
What can I expect my average weekly time commitment to be?
This will vary depending on your own learning pace; however, on average you should expect to commit about 4 hours per week to the program.
Can I come to SWAF during my work hours/shift?
No, students are expected to complete this program on their own time.
Do I have to come to SWAF at the same time every week?
No, students who are enrolled in the program can attend the SWAF classroom at any time during the designated hours of operation each week.
What are some of the courses and assessments offered by the SWAF program?
The SWAF program offers the following credit courses in workplace, college and university levels:
- Grade 11 and 12 English
- Grade 11 and 12 Math
- Some Grade 11 and 12 Science, Social Science and Business
- Co-op Courses: Your current job can double as a Co-op placement. For every 100 hours you work, you can earn one Co-op credit. Your supervisor will need to meet with the SWAF Co-op Teacher, there will be a number of workplace visits and completion of a course book in order to earn these credits.
Also, you may be eligible for junior and senior PLAR – Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition equivalency credits. The PLAR assessment process evaluates the academic knowledge and skills you have acquired over time, including experiences outside of the classroom, to then award equivalency credits towards earning your OSSD.
Will the company I work for or anyone else get copies of my results?
No, no one else will see or receive copies of your results.
What happens if I enroll in the program, but I am no longer able to attend?
Students are expected to make a commitment to the SWAF program. We recognize, however, there may be some circumstances that might prevent you from being able to meet your initial goals. Your work will not be for nothing – in the future you are welcome to pick-up where you left off.
Can my friend/family member participate in the SWAF program?
Friends or family members who are employed full-time in manufacturing or production and are 18yrs+ may be eligible for the program.
What happens if I am no longer employed with a company that sponsors a SWAF classroom, and have not completed the program?
If you are no longer an employee, please contact your SWAF teacher to make arrangements to complete your diploma.
Is this the only way that I can obtain my high school diploma?
No, you can also earn your OSSD through other programs. For more information on other ways to obtain your OSSD, visit Continuing Education on the Upper Grand District School Board’s web site: https://www.ugdsb.ca/continuing-education/