Surrey Board of Trade Releases Literacy Policy in Advance of School Season

The Surrey Board of Trade has authored a policy requesting that federal and provincial governments ensure that the future workforce is adequately trained. The specific recommendations are to:

1.     Build and implement competency frameworks to identify skill levels and competencies required by jobs in the economy and embed literacy in all workforce training and education initiatives;

2.     Mandate the new Future Skills Centre to include cognitive skills in its research and implementation programs; and,

3.     Ensure that each of our province’s K-12 and post-secondary institutions offer an adequate number of opportunities to learn and upgrade their literacy, numeracy, problem-solving skills and other essential skills.

“The Surrey Board of Trade was pleased with BC Education Minister Fleming’s announcement this past summer on the new senior curriculum that would focus more on real life skills and help students focus on post-graduation strategies for education and employment,” said Anita Huberman, CEO, Surrey Board of Trade.

The new curriculum is to be:

·       Personalized and ­flexible

·       Focus on core competencies (thinking, communication, and social and personal Responsibility)

·       Focus on essential learning and big ideas in each subject

·       Focus on literacy and numeracy foundations.

According to international literacy assessments, more than 40% of Canada’s workforce do not have adequate levels of literacy skills needed to learn efficiently and be highly productive in most jobs. Without this ability, many Canadians will not be able to keep their jobs – or find new ones – and a growing number of employers will not be able to find workers with the skills they need.

The lack of available training tied to industry needs for adult workers compounds the problem. The problem is getting worse. Increasing the literacy skills in the workforce by an average of 1% would over time lead to a 3% increase in GDP or $54 billion per year, every year and a 5% increase in productivity. Literacy scores and the level of skills for young people have been visibly on the decline.

“Work is changing due to automation and globalization. We need leadership not only for technical skills training but also for a strategic focus on literacy, numeracy, problem-solving skills and other essential skills.”

For the full policy LINK

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For further details, please contact:

Anita Huberman, CEO
D: 604.634.0342
C: 604.340.3899