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“What’s New on the Federal Front”

The Essential Skills (ES) team of Human Resources and Skills Development Canada has many new activities underway. This year, the activities focus more on integrating Essential Skills in the workplace. Increasing uptake with workplace stakeholders and helping them to see the benefits of Essential Skills training is a key challenge. Guiding this work is the Essential Skills vision and four strategic objectives.

Vision:
To improve the Essential Skills levels of Canadians entering or in the labour market in order to optimize participation, facilitate transitions and improve productivity in the workplace.

To highlight some of the work taking place this year, here are the objectives and examples of key activities:

1. Expand the Essential Skills knowledge base and research capacity.

  • Continue the development of the ES profiles. The goal for this year is to add 50 new profiles for a total of approximately
    300 ES profiles.
  • Perform an environmental scan to determine awareness and use of ES nationally.

2. Increase ES recognition and utilization in the workplace through partnerships

  • Provide expertise and material to support ES curriculum development in K-12 and colleges.
  • Support alliances and networks to improve outcomes of various target groups (Aboriginals, immigrants, unemployed).

3. Contribute to the development of tools to integrate ES in the workplace and improve HR practices.

  • Develop an ES toolkit to provide a broader selection of tools for workplace stakeholders.
  • Prepare an investment plan and fund projects to pilot and promote tools designed to facilitate ES integration into HR practices.

4. Increase awareness of Essential Skills.

  • Contribute to the development of pan-Canadian networks to improve information exchange and access to best practices, tools, curriculum and professional development opportunities .
  • Develop communications materials aimed at workplace stakeholders.