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District School Board Ontario North East
Specialist High Skills Major (SHSM)


A Specialist High Skills Major (SHSM) is a ministry approved specialized program which allows grade 11 and 12 students

to experience a range of customized, career focused learning opportunities while still earning their high school credits.

The program allows students to focus their education in a specific sector; while gaining valuable experience and developing essential skills in their chosen pathway.

Students completing the required components of the SHSM are able to graduate with an Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD) with a Red Seal.


​5 SHSM Program Components

Pursuing an SHSM enables students to:

1. Customize their secondary school education to suit their interests and talents

2. Develop specialized knowledge and skills that are valued by the sector and postsecondary education institutions

3. Earn credits that are recognized by the sector and postsecondary education institutions

4. Acquire sector-specific and career-relevant certification and training

Together, these requirements provide the curriculum-based and experiential learning experiences for making a successful transition to a student's chosen pathway.

1. Bundle of Gr. 11 & 12 Courses

2. Certifications

3. Reach Ahead Opportunities

4. Cooperative Education

5. Sector-Specific Partnered Experiences in Math, Coding or ICE (Innovation, Creativity & Entrepreneurship