Toronto District School Board – George Brown College SWAC program

  • The School Within a College (SWAC) program is a Student Success initiative between the Toronto District School Board (TDSB) and George Brown College (GBC) since 2010.  SWAC offers senior secondary students the opportunity to earn secondary school credits and dual credit 'General Education' college credits with the goal for students to complete their Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD) and transition to post-secondary destinations.
  • The primary focus continues to be on students facing challenges in graduating and who have the potential to succeed in college.
  • Courses are delivered by Secondary School Teachers and College Instructors at George Brown College's St. James Campus in downtown Toronto. Students attend classes at the College five days a week.

WHO – SWAC Target Student Group

  • Should be between the ages of 17-20
  • Should have completed at least 22 credits
  • Completed OSSLT or attempted OSSLC
  • At risk of not graduating, disengaged and/or underachieving
  • Must be in a position to recover credits in a SWAC Credit Recovery classroom
  • In a graduating position by June 2020
  • Potential to succeed in college courses
  • College and/or Apprenticeship bound
  • Demonstrates evidence of independent learning skills

WHY – SWAC Opportunities

  • Earn up to 6 credits in one semester, including two College dual credit courses
  • Exploration of college life and postsecondary programs
  • Adult learning environment in a College setting
  • Instruction in self-advocacy, literacy skills, and learning strategies for preparation and transition into post-secondary education/pathway
  • Breakfast nutrition program, access to College services, College ID card
  • Presto card with monthly transit pass provided
  • Explore postsecondary programs and other opportunities with a Student Advisor who also assists students with the application process. The Ministry of Education covers application fees to Ontario postsecondary institutions for all SWAC students.

WHEN – SWAC Recruitment

  • There are two intakes during the year: September and February. Interested students should speak to their Guidance Counsellor or Student Success teacher at their secondary school.
  • Student candidates registered at a TDSB secondary school complete an Application Package in April/May for potential entry into program in Semester 1 (September start) or November/December for potential entry into program in Semester 2 (February start).
  • Students attend an Information Session at George Brown College to learn more about the program and to be considered for acceptance.

Summer SWAC programs at George Brown College

Each summer, we offer a full-day Summer SWAC program during the month of July. High school students who are close to graduating can earn two credits toward their high school diploma (OSSD) by taking a Dual Credit college course along with a high school course (usually Grade 12 English). During July 2020 and July 2021, we offered an online Summer SWAC program. Students took Grade 12 College English or Credit Recovery courses along with a College dual credit college course. Students who successfully complete the Summer SWAC program earn their Grade 12 English credit (or credits recovered) as well as a college credit and an additional high school credit for passing the dual credit course.


Shelagh Taber Walsh, Coordinator of Educational Projects
Community Partnerships Office

Grace Whang, SCWI Program Coordinator
Community Partnerships Office

Amanda St. Louis, TDSB Student Success Coordinator – Dual Credit, SWAC & Learning to 18
Toronto District School Board