Experiential Learning

Cooperative Education

Through the lens of experiential learning, this department provides support to youth ages 14-21 to work towards high school graduate expectations by taking part in job training, career research, workplace preparation, job shadow, work experience, co-op and apprentice opportunities. This program can be accessed by any student whose support group in their school feel would benefit from. In theory, if ready, willing and able every student could benefit as they are going to have to carve out their niche in the world of work before we know it.

At the heart of the program is linking credit-based curriculum in school to the workplace, a valuable opportunity for all students in the fast-paced, ever-changing landscape of “work” today. This program is accessible to students from all High School Treatment Partners (Custody Units, CAS, Youville Centre, Children’s Aid Society, Dave Smith, ROH, CHEO, Roberts Smart) and requires special coordination between current treatment partner/teaching staff by filling out an application form for experiential learning. The biggest barrier for success in this program is working with the supportive adults in the youth’s life to create workflows, communication, schedules and transportation that works best for them. We are particularly proud of the fact that within the McHugh experiential learning realm we live by the catchphrase “No Excuses”. We find ways to support students, learn from failure and follow our dreams.

Technological Education

At M.F. McHugh, a fully comprehensive tech program is available to students at many of our units. Three fully-qualified technological studies teachers are available to offer distinct programs in a variety of settings, on, and off-site. Students are guided through the development of real, hands-on skills, in order to gain a base for the pursuit of post-secondary studies, or, to simply increase their life-skills for future endeavours.

Our itinerant tech teachers are able to deliver their programs – in some cases in collaboration with the community – to students in the elementary units at: Fisher Park, and The Steps to Success program, and in the secondary units at: Back on Track, CAS, Dave Smith – both Carleton Place and Carp, Roberts Smart, Sherwood, and The Youville Centre.

They provide a variety of programs, including, but not limited to 3-D Printing, Automotive studies, Coding, Construction, Culinary Arts, Design, Electrical Studies, Gardening, Masonry, Photography, Videography, Welding, and Woodworking.

Recent student projects have included:

  • the design and construction of a fully functional skating rink

  • the construction of a new basketball court

  • drywall repair and framing

  • the construction of Japanese Toolboxes

  • the harvesting of vegetables

  • a variety of culinary delicacies

  • the construction of sanding blocks

  • the complete wiring of electrical circuits

  • the construction of pine car racetracks

  • the design and construction of woodgrain cutting boards and other kitchen utensils

  • a variety of Photoshop projects

  • the Voices of McHugh photography project posters

  • chick and duck hatching