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The Ontario Student Record: A Short Guide for Parents and Students

The Ontario Student Record (OSR) is a critical document that tracks a student's educational progress through schools in Ontario. Established by the Education Act, the OSR is a collection of information about a student's academic performance, attendance, and other relevant information that is used to support their learning and development.

The Education Act requires that the principal of a school collect information for inclusion in an OSR and establish, maintain, retain, transfer, and dispose of the record. This information is considered privileged and is only accessible to supervisory officers, the principal, and teachers for the purpose of improving instruction for the student. Each student and the parent(s) of a student who is not an adult must be made aware of the purpose and content of the OSR and have access to the information contained in it.

The OSR guideline, established by the Ministry of Education, sets out the policies and procedures for the establishment, maintenance, use, retention, transfer, and disposal of the OSR. This includes the use of approved vendors for the OSR folder, Ontario Student Transcript, documentation file folder, and office index card. Other forms needed for the OSR are available on the ministry's website and can be printed by the school board or school or by vendors of their choice.

An OSR is established for each student who enrols in a school operated by a school board or the Ministry of Education. This record is ongoing and will be transferred to the new school if the student transfers within Ontario. The OSR may be microrecorded or recorded and stored electronically, but original documents must be retained when necessary. Any reproduction of the OSR must adhere to the security and access requirements of the original OSR.

In the event that an OSR folder is lost or inadvertently destroyed, a new OSR folder will be created using information from the current office index card and previous school(s), if applicable. The OSR must be kept in a secure location and accessed only by authorized personnel. At least once a year, the principal or designate must review the OSR to ensure that all required information is included and up-to-date.

When a student transfers to a new school, the OSR must be transferred within five days. The OSR must be retained for a minimum of sixty years after the student's graduation or withdrawal from the school. When disposing of an OSR, the confidentiality of the information contained in it must be ensured.

Parents have the right to review the information in their child's OSR and request corrections if necessary. It is important for parents to stay informed and involved in their child's education and support plans, and the OSR is a valuable tool in this process.

The OSR has a long history in Ontario's education system. The Education Act, first enacted in 1890, required that schools keep records of student attendance and progress. Over the years, the Act has been amended to include additional information and requirements for the OSR. In 2000, the Ministry of Education published the OSR guideline, which has been revised and updated as needed, including an update in 2020 to align with the Ontario Regulation 261/19, "Reciprocal Education Approach."

The OSR is an important document for several reasons. It provides a comprehensive record of a student's academic progress and other relevant information, which can be used to support their learning and development. It also helps to ensure that students receive the appropriate accommodations, modifications, and support they need to succeed in school. Additionally, the OSR is a valuable tool for tracking a student's progress and identifying areas where they may need additional support.

There are a few tips that parents and students should be mindful of when it comes to the OSR. It is important for parents to stay informed and involved in their child's education, and the OSR is a valuable tool in this process. Parents should be aware of the purpose and content of the OSR, as well as their right to review and request corrections to the information contained in it.

Students should also be aware of the information included in their OSR and how it can affect their educational experience. They should make sure that their attendance and academic performance are accurately reflected in their OSR, and seek support from their school if they need it.

Overall, the Ontario Student Record is a critical document for supporting student learning and development in Ontario's education system. By staying informed and involved, parents and students can ensure that the OSR accurately reflects their progress and helps them receive the support they need to succeed.


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