With assistance from the Government of Canada’s Canada Learning Bond Program, Toronto Employment & Social Services (TESS) is testing a new approach to helping parents, who receive Ontario Works benefits, access funding to support the costs of post-secondary education for their children.

In addition to providing information about the Canada Learning Bond (CLB), TESS caseworkers are currently providing supportive access to parents to address barriers to opening Registered Education Savings Plans (RESPs), accessing the CLB, and saving for future education expenses.

This internal administrative analysis will provide information about the effectiveness of different approaches to help parents open RESPs for their children and access the Canada Learning Bond. Participation by families receiving Ontario Works is entirely voluntary, and no identifying details are shared with the analysts. Should you not wish to participate, please advise your caseworker at your next contact.

To determine the effectiveness of CLB supportive access approaches, there will be a review of information collected by TESS about RESPs opened, with all personally identifiable information removed.

Individuals who access the CLB or open an RESP as part of this initiative are not required to participate in this internal administrative analysis, however, participants may be contacted in the future and requested to complete a survey and/or participate in a focus group discussion. Participation in such activities is strictly voluntary.

If you do not wish to participate in this internal administrative analysis in any capacity, you can still open an RESP, access the CLB, and start saving for your child(ren)’s education.  Please ask your caseworker for details.

To learn how to help more families start saving for their child(ren)’s education, TESS will be sharing information with analysts. This information will not include any names or individual records, which means that your name or any other identifying information will not be shared. Participants involved in this internal administrative analysis agree that TESS can share anonymized data with analysts in order to improve our service and processes.

Because TESS is collecting data to determine whether or not our supports are helpful in assisting parents to access the Canada Learning Bond, your caseworker may ask for proof of when you have opened an RESP for your child(ren). An account statement from the financial institution where you opened the RESP can be provided as confirmation. This documentation will be visually verified and either returned to you or destroyed. It will not be kept on file.

The opinions and interpretations in this publication are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Government of Canada.