As part of our advocacy work in Ottawa, Polytechnics Canada issues written submissions and policy papers to inform and guide decision-makers in areas where polytechnic institutions offer pragmatic solutions to the country’s skills and innovation challenges.

2020 – Written Submission for the Pre-Budget Consultations in Advance of the 2021 Federal Budget

Key recommendations include:

  1. Create Economic Recovery Hubs hosted at Regional Development Agencies with a view to enabling small- and mid-sized businesses to enhance their productivity and innovation potential with the support of local innovation intermediaries
  2. Empower Canadians to rapidly retrain and upskill by providing financial support and navigation to short-cycle training programs focused on career-relevant skills
  3. To ensure talent pipeline continuity for frontline occupations, invest in the digital learning infrastructure required for the delivery of remote, simulated and hybrid hands-on training
  4. Relaunch the Post-Secondary Institutions Strategic Investment Fund, building in flexible project eligibility criteria to enable both new construction and green retrofits, the repurposing of existing buildings, and health & safety-related transformations required to keep campuses safe, innovative and sustainable
  5. Introduce a Technology Access Grant within the Canada Student Loan Program to address equity of access to the hardware, software and broadband internet required for postsecondary education delivered in remote and hybrid formats

2020 – House of Commons Standing Committee on Human Resources, Skills and Social Development & the Status of Persons with Disabilities study on the Impact of COVID-19

Key recommendations include:

  1. Invest in Canada’s post-secondary infrastructure to ensure training can occur in an environment that responds to physical distancing and other safety protocols while also supporting green retrofits
  2. Support the digital adaptation of learning and training in Canada, enabling learners who will face challenges to in-person instruction and ensuring applied learning can be delivered in a broad range of new ways
  3. Empower Canadians to retrain and upskill at this critical juncture by offering all Canadian Emergency Response Benefit recipients a one-time boost to the Canada Training Benefit
  4. Enable the business- and innovation-enhancing services available at Canada’s polytechnics, ensuring they are positioned to support Canada’s small- and medium-sized enterprises and deliver meaningful, real-world work-integrated learning opportunities to learners

2020 – House of Commons Standing Committee on Industry, Science and Technology study on the Impact of COVID-19

Key recommendations include:

  1. Targeted investments in polytechnic/college applied research capacity to scale up the critical support these institutions offer to SME partners
  2. Expanded funding to existing grant categories and broader eligibility criteria to ensure enterprises that need support can access it
  3. The temporary suspension of employer cash contributions on applied research activity

2020 – House of Commons Standing Committee on Finance study on the Impact of COVID-19

Key recommendations include:

  1. Invest in Canada’s post-secondary infrastructure to ensure training can occur in an environment that responds to physical distancing and other safety protocols while also supporting “green” retrofits
  2. Support the digital adaptation of learning and training in Canada, enabling learners who will face challenges to in-person instruction and ensuring applied learning can be delivered in a broad range of new ways
  3. Empower Canadians to retrain and upskill at this critical juncture by offering all Canadian Emergency Response Benefit recipients a one-time boost to the Canada Training Benefit
  4. Enable the business- and innovation-enhancing services available at Canada’s polytechnics, ensuring they are positioned to support Canada’s small- and medium-sized enterprises
  5. Support the expanded participation of industry and non-profit partners in polytechnic applied research, ensuring all enterprises in Canada have the support they need to survive and thrive

2018 – House of Commons study on experiential learning Standing Committee on Human Resources, Skills and Social Development & the Status of Persons with Disabilities

Key recommendations include:

  1. Create a single point of entry for employers and students to access all federally-funded experiential learning programs
  2. Adopt a broad definition of experiential learning that includes learning typologies beyond the traditional co-op model
  3. Leverage existing investments in infrastructure and Innovation Superclusters to expand experiential learning placements and apprenticeships
  4. Grow the number of employers offering experiential learning placements by directing federal supports to a greater diversity of employers across a broader range of sectors
  5. Invest in improved data on experiential learning placements and outcomes
  6. Extend Youth Employment Strategy (YES) programming to all employers and deliver programming through a single federal department
  7. Extend YES programming eligibility to recent post-secondary graduates
  8. Embrace parity of esteem in the skilled trades by treating apprenticeship as an equally valuable post-secondary education pathway in YES programming