Nunavut plans new kind of high school diploma for adults: Aariak

Pathway to Adult Secondary School Graduation to be called “PASS” for short

By NUNATSIAQ NEWS

A new high school diploma will help more people in the territory find work, said Nunavut Premier Eva Aariak, who is also the territory’s education minister, Feb. 26 on the opening afternoon of the Nunavut legislature’s winter sitting.

The education department is developing a new method for adults to obtain a Nunavut Secondary School diploma that will be called the Pathway to Adult Secondary School Graduation, or “PASS” for short.

The new PASS diploma was first mentioned last February when Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced CanNor spending of $11.1 million on adult education in Nunavut over the next five years.

“The PASS initiative is an important achievement of this government. It will make a lasting contribution to our efforts to reduce poverty. It will qualify more Nunavummiut for jobs in our public service so that we achieve our land claim commitments on Inuit employment. And it will strengthen our made-in-Nunavut workforce so we can build a strong economy and prosperity for future generations of Nunavummiut,” Aariak said in her minister’s statement.

There is a shortage of skilled workers in Nunavut that will increase in the future, Aariak said.

“We are preparing to welcome billions of dollars in investment in our mining sector. Will it be Nunavummiut who fill the jobs of building and operating these mines or will we be forced to import skilled workers from elsewhere?” she said.

At the same time, Nunavummiut in every Nunavut community want to work, but lack the skills they need to land a job, she said.

“This government is helping more Nunavummiut to graduate from high school” by instituting the new PASS diploma, she said.

PASS is “a process that will be unique to every individual,” she said.

Depending on a person’s background and experiences, the diploma may recognize prior learning assessment, literacy training, adult basic education and the completion of high school courses, she said.

PASS will let adult learners to meet Nunavut’s high school graduation requirements and get a diploma.

“With their diploma in hand, more Nunavummiut will have access to university and college programs throughout Canada, opening up a world of possibilities,” she said.

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