July 15, 2015
The process for apprenticeship registration has changed in Ontario. Apprenticeship in Ontario is now a partnership between the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities (MTCU) and Ontario College of Trades (OCOT).

An apprenticeship candidate must complete an application form, submit Grade 12 transcripts, be a resident of Ontario, and employed in the horticulture sector.

The candidate and employer must contact the local MTCU Apprenticeship Office to sign a Registered Training Agreement (RTA) with the MTCU.

For a full listing of the offices, go to http://services.findhelp.ca/eo/tcu/appoff.  A representative from the ministry may meet with you or send you an online application also known as a Registered Training Agreement (RTA) to complete and submit.

The MTCU will ensure that the employer has the ability to train and educate the employee, and that the employee will make a serious commitment to the program. Once the application is submitted, encourage your apprentice to check the mail for a membership package from the OCOT. The package should be received within two weeks of signing the RTA. The apprentice must complete, sign and submit the membership application form and associated payment of $67.80 ($60 annual membership fee +HST) to OCOT.

If the apprentice applicant neglects to complete the OCOT membership, they will not be offered a seat in the in-school training session. To verify the status of your apprentice as an ‘active’ member of the Ontario College of Trades, check the public registry under the Find a Member tab at collegeoftrades.ca. Once this is completed, a college that offers the program nearest to the apprentice will contact him or her offering a seat in the in-school training session. This is typically in the fall months. A seat in the in-school training is not confirmed until the $600 tuition fee has been paid in full to the college and a receipt provided.

Once the candidate is enrolled into the Horticultural Technician Apprenticeship Program, the candidate commits to the following:
  1. Training with the employers for 4,000 to 6,000 hours (two to three years)
  2. Completing a 12-week basic in-school training session at a community college ($600 tuition fee applies)
  3. Completing a 12-week (advanced) in-school training session at a community college ($600 tuition fee applies)
  4. Completing a skills sign-off Training Standard Book of required skills

A number of colleges in Ontario offer programs. To access those colleges, go to horttrades.com/apprenticeship-training.

After registration and the successful completion of the on the job training and the classroom training Level 1 and 2, the candidate is granted a Certificate of Apprenticeship. The apprentice is then able to write the government exam. This is a multiple-choice questionnaire of 125 questions.

The passing mark is 70 per cent and the successful candidate obtains a Certificate of Qualification and becomes a journey person.

If you have any questions, contact Sally Harvey at sharvey@landscapeontario.com.