TVDSB to launch pilot project in January 2024 to support adult learners

It’s a career that might often be overlooked, but maintenance staff who keep schools operational are an integral part of the school system.

“We have an opportunity to impact student education by making our sites clean, safe and welcoming,” said Barry Kingsley, operations manager with Thames Valley District School Board (TVDSB).

This January, TVDSB will launch a pilot project that will help fill much needed custodial positions across the board, while supporting adult learners.

Currently the board requires staff to have their high school diploma prior to applying for employment, but this initiative will change that for a select group of students who are two years or less from completing high school, to continue their education while working for the board as temporary custodians.

Kingsley said the program will break down barriers.

“One of the things that’s really exciting about this program is the impact that it will have on families. Some of our students have parents who weren’t able to get their grade 12 diploma, this will impact them greatly,” added Kingsley.

TVDSB will support the successful applicants in completing their secondary school diplomas through its adult and continuing education program at B. Davison Secondary School.

Kingsley explained that “On the job experience, and on the job training may be applied toward credits as well.”

Once individuals complete their education, there may be the opportunity for permanent contract employment with TVDSB.

In an email to CTV News London, CUPE local 4222, which represents TVDSB support staff, said they’ve been in discussion with the board regarding the pilot project.

“We feel that this would be a benefit for our custodians as we are understaffed and our members are overloaded with the extra work due to illness and not enough staff hired. Hopefully this will assist with those needs and the individuals who are hired will be required to achieve their grade 12 within that two year window and then once that is completed, they can go on our casual staff list for potential permanent positions,” the statement reads.

Candidates will be able to apply for the opportunity in the New Year on the TVDSB website.

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