In order to graduate with an Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD), students must complete 40 community service hours. Students arriving in Ontario after grade 9 must complete a pro-rated 10 hours per year. Students may begin earning community hours in the summer preceding the start of Grade 9.
The HDSB guide to community service hours gives an overview of the requirement. This guide is summarized in this presentation. Before starting an activity, students should make sure that the activity is eligible by consulting the HDSB Policy.
In general, activities associated with non-profit, community-based agencies that occur outside of the regular school day are eligible. Activities that would normally be performed for wages by a person in the workplace are ineligible. If you are not sure, talk to your guidance counselor BEFORE starting the activity.
Some organizations will provide a form letter on completion of hours, however, any document that includes:
- student name
- supervisor name
- contact information
- total number of hours
- duties performed
- name of the organization
Another option is the Record of Community Involvement Form, which students can have their supervisor complete.
The form or letter must be submitted to North or South Student Services. We suggest students make a copy of it before submitting it to the school so that it can be used as part of a resume/portfolio.
It is recommended that students intending to enter the IB Diploma Program in Grade 11 complete all 40 of their Community Service Hours by the end of Grade 10. This is because IB students are required to complete 150 CAS hours which is in addition to the 40 Community Service Hours required for the OSSD. Information about the CAS requirement is available here.
Students looking for volunteer opportunities can consult the bulletin boards outside of South Student Services or WOSSpportunities, as blog where we post a variety of different out-of-school opportunities. Eligible activities will be tagged “Volunteer”.