High School Certificates

There are some students who do not meet all of the requirements for an Ontario Secondary School Diploma when they leave school. For these students there are two certificate options, the Ontario Secondary School Certificate, for those who achieve 14 credits including seven compulsory credits, and the Certificate of Accomplishment.


The Ontario Secondary School Certificate will be granted on request to students who leave school before earning the Ontario Secondary School Diploma, provided that they have earned a minimum of 14 credits distributed as follows:

Compulsory credits (total of seven)

  • Two credits in English
  • One credit in Canadian geography or Canadian history
  • One credit in mathematics
  • One credit in science
  • One credit in health and physical education
  • One credit in the arts or technological education

Optional credits (total of seven)

  • Seven credits selected by the student from available courses

The provisions for making substitutions for compulsory credits are the same as those for the Ontario Secondary School Diploma.


Students who leave school before fulfilling the requirements for the Ontario Secondary School Diploma or the Ontario Secondary School Certificate may be granted a Certificate of Accomplishment. The Certificate of Accomplishment may be a useful means of recognizing achievement for students who plan to take certain vocational programs or other kinds of further training, or who plan to find employment after leaving school.

The Certificate of Accomplishment will be accompanied by the student’s Ontario Student Transcript. For those students who have an Individual Education Plan (IEP), a copy of the IEP may be included.

Students who return to school to complete additional credit and non-credit courses (including courses with modified or alternative expectations in special education programs) will have their transcript updated accordingly, but will not be issued a new Certificate of Accomplishment.

The Ontario Secondary School Diploma or Ontario Secondary School Certificate will be granted when a student has fulfilled the appropriate requirements.

This information is from the Ontario Secondary Schools, Grades 9 to 12, Program and Diploma Requirements, 1999.

Ontario Seondary Schools, Grades 9 to 12, Program and Diploma Requirements 1999