Educational Support Field Placement FAQs

If you are wanting to apply for a field placement, please read the following list of Frequently Asked Questions thoroughly.
If your question is not answered in one of these FAQs, please feel free to contact the placement officer at

Educational Support Field Placement FAQs

How do I request access to upload my placement paperwork?

All students wishing to apply for a field placement, must first request to be activated in their program's Pre-Placement Activation Module in order to submit the required documentation by the posted deadline.

Please complete the following steps below in order to request activation for DC Connect and access to Verified by Synergy Gateway:

Email and provide the following information:

  1. First & Last Name
  2. Student ID Number
  3. Program Name
  4. Placement level (if applicable) eg: Level 1, 2 or 3


  • Please submit your request only once.
  • Students will be required to upload pre-placement paperwork to VERIFIED by Synergy Gateway which is Durham College's third party documentation submission partner.  Once you have been activated with VERIFIED by Synergy Gateway, you must begin uploading your required paperwork to Synergy's platform.
  • Students will also be required to upload their program's field placement application in the DC Connect Placement Application module.
  • Students are required to monitor their email account during the application process and throughout placement, as placement correspondence will only be sent to the student's address.  Personal email addresses will not be used.

What documents are required for my field placement?

The following are the documents required for field placements in the Educational Support program.

Upload to DC Connect:

  • Completed application form

Upload to Verified by Synergy Gateway:

  • Entry Immunization Form
  • Criminal Reference Check with Vulnerable Sector Screen
  • Standard First Aid with CPR – Level C
  • Four Online Health & Safety Training Modules:
    • Worker Health & Safety Awareness in 4 Steps
    • WHMIS
    • AODA
    • Workplace Violence and Harassment Prevention
  • Diversity Certificate Module
I have had a criminal reference check completed in the past, do I need a new one?

The Criminal Reference Check must be valid within 6 months of your placement, and remain valid for the duration of your placement. (Note: Depending on where you are placed, your placement host may require a CRC newer than Durham College’s requirement. – example: Regional Daycare centres often require the CRC is no more than 1 month old). You must provide an Original CRC for every placement.
Winter Placements: If your placement begins in January, the CRC cannot be issued prior to August of the previous year.
Spring/Summer Placements:
If your placement begins in May, the CRC cannot be issued prior to December of the previous year.
Fall Placements:
If your placement begins in September, the CRC cannot be issued prior to April of the same year.

How many hours must I complete for placement?

Please view the Field Placement course description for the required hours for your program’s placement course(s) on the Professional and Part-time Learning website:  Educational Support (Two-Year Diploma)

I work full time, how can I do a placement also?

Students may find it necessary to make personal adjustments to work and/or family schedules in order to complete the field placement. Options to be considered are: leaves of absence, use of vacation time, extended work hours to free up hours for placement, etc. We recognize that such arrangements require a great deal of time and effort on the students’ (and their families’) part and applaud their commitment to the achievement of their goals.

How many hours can I do per week?

Students are required to arrange a mutually suitable schedule with the host agency supervisor. When arranging their schedule, students must ensure they meet the required number of hours by the end date of the course.

Am I required to find my own placement?

Students outside of Durham Region should first contact the school board in their area to determine the process for obtaining placements.  Not following your school board's process could jeopardize future placements.  Please do not contact the individual school directly unless advised by your area's school board.

If you are within the Durham Region, please follow the procedure below:


  • Students are not permitted to contact the individual schools OR the school board office.
  • Students are required to complete the application form and submit by the paperwork deadline.
  • The school board will provide the placement location to the Placement Officer.
  • The Placement Officer will then advise the student when he/she has been cleared to begin.
Can I do my placement in another province?

Field Placements in this program must be completed within the Province of Ontario.

May I do my placement where I work?

Doing your placement where you work is a conflict of interest and is not permitted.

May I do my placement where a relative is employed?

Students are not permitted to complete a placement experience where they have a relative or familial relationship with anyone with supervisory responsibility at the agency. This would be considered a conflict of interest.

My agency host wants to pay me, is this allowed?

Field placements are unpaid learning opportunities, and therefore, students are not permitted to accept payment for the field placement experience.

May I do all of my placements at the same setting?

No.  There are specific age groups that must be completed with each level.  It is not possible to do all placements in the same school.

ES Practicum 3 can be completed in either the elementary or high school level, and therefore can be completed in a school previously attended for placement 1 or 2, providing it is focused on a program or classroom containing students with exceptionalities.

Over the course of the three practicums, students will gain experience in various classroom setting as noted below.

ES Practicum I - elementary school

ES Practicum II - high school

ES Practicum III - specialized classroom with students with exceptionalities

May I begin my placement before the course begins?

Students must ensure that they have been officially cleared prior to beginning their hours at the host agency.  Clearance will not occur prior to the start date for the placement course.

Any hours completed prior to official clearance will not be counted and must be made up before the end of the course.

Am I able to challenge any/all of my field placements?
This program's field placements are hosted by Mohawk College. Students wishing to challenge any of the field placements in this program must contact Mohawk College's PLAR (Prior Learning Assessment & Recognition) office directly. Students are encouraged to start this process as early as possible.  If the challenge process is successful, the credit must be transferred back to Durham College before registering for future placements in the program.  Each placement requires the previous placement to be completed before the student can be approved to register/attend.
How will I know when I can begin my hours?

Each student will receive official clearance via email to their account only advising them of placement details and official clearance date.

What is the withdrawal policy for field placements?

Students may withdraw/transfer during the first 13 days after the official start date.

If students have been given official clearance to begin placement, no refund or transfer will be accepted.