Ontario Liberals say they would re-introduce Grade 13 on an optional basis

The Ontario Liberals say they would re-introduce Grade 13 on an optional basis if elected.

Liberal Leader Steven Del Duca says it’s part of a plan to help students cope with the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on their education.

He says allowing students to do Grade 13 would give them the choice of spending more time on required courses for post-secondary education and taking new classes on personal finances, civics, and mental health and well-being.

The Liberals are also promising to hire 1,000 more mental health professionals for students and staff and an additional special education worker for every school.

They are also proposing to hire 5,000 more special education workers, expand the Student Nutrition Program offering free breakfast, end streaming and eliminate standardized EQAO tests and replace them with a new assessment strategy.

Del Duca has released other planks of his education platform this week, including building 200 new schools and repairing another 4,500, hiring 10,000 more teachers and capping class sizes at 20 for all grades.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 6, 2022.

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