High schools not pre­par­ing youth for em­ploy­ment: busi­ness group

Medicine Hat News - - YOUTH -

TORONTO A study con­ducted for the Cana­dian Fed­er­a­tion of In­de­pen­dent Busi­nesses con­cludes that high schools do not ad­e­quately pre­pare stu­dents for join­ing the work­force.

The na­tional group pri­mar­ily rep­re­sents small and mid-sized busi­nesses, which have been say­ing for months that they are hav­ing dif­fi­culty fill­ing job va­can­cies.

The 29-page re­port says there’s a mis­match be­tween the ex­pec­ta­tions of em­ploy­ers and youth be­tween the ages of 15 and 24 years.

How­ever, the sur­vey of CFIB mem­bers found the big­gest dif­fi­culty is with high school-age work­ers — with more than half in­di­cat­ing some level of dis­sat­is­fac­tion.

It rec­om­mends high schools place more fo­cus on soft skills and work­place lit­er­acy and that they cre­ate more part­ner­ships with the busi­ness com­mu­nity to en­sure the right skills are be­ing taught.

The re­port says em­ploy­ers are over­whelm­ingly more in­ter­ested in young em­ploy­ees with good mo­ti­va­tion and at­ti­tude and other gen­eral skills while in­dus­try-spe­cific knowl­edge and pre­vi­ous work ex­pe­ri­ence are much lower pri­or­i­ties.

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