Community Involvement

Every student who enters secondary school in grade 9 after September 1999 must complete 40 hours of community involvement as part of the requirements for an Ontario Secondary School Diploma.

The purpose of Mandatory Community Involvement is to encourage students to develop an understanding of the various roles they can play in their community and to help them develop a greater sense of belonging within the community.

Students may choose to help their community, their neighbours, or their school. Community involvement:

  • Must be completed outside scheduled class time
  • Must not be part of a credit course
  • Must be an unpaid activity
  • Must total 40 hours
  • Must be completed after the summer going into grade 9
  • Must not displace paid workers

Sponsors in the Community

  • Individuals and organizations may be asked by the student to sponsor a community involvement activity
  • Any training, equipment, or special preparation that is required for the activity should be provided by the person or organization
  • It is crucial that students are able to fulfill their requirements in a safe environment
  • The person overseeing the student’s activity must verify the date(s) and the number of hours completed on the”Completion of Community Involvement Activities” form

Parents / Guardians

  • Parents should help their child select community involvement activities
  • Parents are also encouraged to contact the community sponsor and the school with questions or concerns
  • A parent must sign the “Notification of Planned Community Involvement Activities” form and the “Completion of Community Activities” form if the student is under the age of eighteen


  • With the help of their parents, students will select an appropriate activity
  • If the activity is not on the Board’s list of approved activities, the principal must sign the “Notification of Planned Community Involvement Activities” form before the student begins
  • Students must complete and submit their “Completion of Community Activities” form as directed by their school

Secondary School Principals

  • Principals are responsible for sharing information with parents, students and community sponsors
  • Principals are responsible for ensuring that the completed community involvement hours are entered on the student’s official transcript

The activities listed below are approved by Trillium Lakelands District School Board for completion of the community involvement requirement:

  • Help the elderly, sick, isolated, disabled, or disadvantaged in organized settings or on an individual basis
  • Work for non-profit organizations
  • Serve as a youth leader
  • Work for service clubs, community organizations, and church groups
  • Tutor / Mentor
  • Provide child care
  • Work in the public sector (e.g. Community Policing, hospitals, schools, libraries)
  • Community development and beautification
  • Environmental concerns
  • Ambassadorship
  • Work for political parties / causes
  • Coach, referee, score keep

Remember — you must discuss with the principal/admin head any activities not listed above before they are started in order for them to count toward the 40 hour total.

Ineligible activities are activities that:

  • Already a requirement of a class of course in which the student is enrolled (e.g. cooperative education, job shadowing, or work experience)
  • Take place during class time; however during lunch breaks or “spare” periods is allowed
  • Would normally be performed for wages by a person in the workplace
  • Take place in a logging or mining environment, if the student is under 16 years of age
  • Take place in a factory, if the student is under 15 years of age
  • Take place in a workplace, other than a factory, if the student is under 14 years of age and is not accompanied by an adult
  • Involve the operation of a vehicle, power tools, or scaffolding
  • Involve the administration of any type or form of medication of medical procedure to other persons
  • Involve handling substances classed as “designated substances” under the Occupational Health and Safety Act
  • Require the knowledge of a trades person whose trade is regulated by the provincial government
  • Involve banking or the handling of securities (stocks/bonds), or the handling of jewelry, works of art, antiques, or other valuable
  • Consist of duties normally performed by the student in the home (i.e. daily chores) or personal recreational activities
  • Involved a court-ordered program (e.g. community-service program for young offenders, probationary program)

In addition to the Ministry of Education’s list of ineligible activities Trillium Lakelands District School Board does not permit the following:

  • Activities involving the handling of weapons or firearms
  • Activities which would go against the school’s Code of Conduct or the Ministry of Education’s Safe Schools Policy