WSIB coverage is provided for pupils (secondary school students) who
- are participating in Ministry of Education work education or experiential learning programs with publicly funded schools, and
- are placed with an employer (placement host) to gain practical work experience.
These pupils are deemed to be "workers" under the Education Act and are covered as such for WSIB purposes.
WSIB coverage for pupils is provided by the Ministry of Education unless it is provided by the placement host.
The purpose of this policy is to identify when pupils are covered by the WSIB and who provides the coverage.
Work Education Agreement
Before a work placement begins, the pupil, school and placement host must complete and sign a Work Education Agreement (WEA) for work education or experiential learning programs that include the following:
- Supervised Alternative Learning for Excused Pupils
- Ontario Youth Apprenticeship Program, and
- Secondary school cooperative education programs.
The WEA clarifies whether the pupil will have WSIB coverage through the placement host or the Ministry of Education.
Unpaid work placements: If the placement host does not pay wages to the pupil, the Ministry of Education is considered to be the employer and is responsible for providing WSIB coverage. (Expense allowances or honoraria paid to pupils are not considered wages for the purposes of WSIB coverage).
Paid work placements: If the placement host does pay wages to the pupil, the placement host is considered to be the employer for WSIB purposes and is responsible for providing WSIB coverage.
The Ministry of Education provides coverage and is considered to be the employer for WSIB purposes if the placement host is paying wages but does not have mandatory coverage or coverage by application with the WSIB. For more information about coverage for the business activities of employers, see 12-01-04, Coverage Status and 12-01-02, Employer by Application.
Reporting a work-related injury/disease
The Employer's Report of Injury/Disease (Form 7) must be submitted to the WSIB if a pupil sustains a work-related injury or disease due to the work placement.
- The school board representative submits the Form 7 and the WEA for placements covered by the Ministry of Education.
- The placement host submits the Form 7 for any placements for which they provide WSIB coverage.
For more information, see 15-01-02, Employer's Initial Reporting Obligations.
The WSIB reviews the information submitted to determine if the pupil has sustained an injury or disease that arose out of and in the course of the work placement, and is entitled to WSIB benefits and services.
When are pupils covered?
Pupils are generally covered in situations such as the following:
- performing the duties assigned by the placement host, under the supervision of a training supervisor
- participating in a work placement on school board property, under the supervision of a teaching or non-teaching staff member (e.g., teacher, building custodian, audio-visual technician, purchasing officer)
- travelling as required to perform the duties assigned by the placement host
- participating in an out of province work placement either internationally or in another
Canadian province/territory. Coverage is automatic for up to six months if the employer’s
place of business is in Ontario for pupils who are residents of Ontario. A written request
must be sent to the WSIB to extend coverage beyond six months.
- participating in an out of province experience (e.g., conference, competition, trade show)
that is part of an Ontario based work placement, and
- being transported from the work placement to receive health care due to a work-related injury or disease.
When are pupils not covered?
Pupils are generally not covered in situations such as the following:
- attending regular classes at school and participating in regular school activities
- travelling to and from the placement host
- training for or participating in individual or team sports, and
- performing a mandatory number of hours of volunteer community service.
Pupils who have a work-related injury or disease due to the work placement may be eligible to receive WSIB benefits and services such as loss of earnings (LOE) benefits, health care benefits, and return-to-work services.
Earnings used to calculate LOE benefits for pupils are identified in accordance with the guidelines for learners as set out in 18-02-08, Determining Average Earnings - Exceptional Cases.
This policy applies to all accidents occurring on or after February 8, 2022.
This document replaces 12-04-07 dated April 9, 2021.
The document was previously published as:
12-04-07 dated July 27, 2018
12-04-07 dated February 2, 2018
12-04-07 dated November 4, 2004
01-02-09 dated October 27, 1997
Workplace Safety and Insurance Act, 1997, as amended
Sections 2(1), 18, 19(1), 53(4)
O. Reg. 175/98
#2, January 31, 2022, page 602