Thank you very much, Mr. Chair.
Thank you very much, both OPG and GE, for being here today, and particularly to GE whose Canadian head office is in my riding in Mississauga. It's nice to have Kim and Ross here. It's nice to see you again, and I very much appreciate the great corporate citizenship and leadership GE and OPG have taken in the various communities where you are operating.
Now that the commercial is over, we'll get to the questions.
I was quite interested in what you said about, what I call, two potential types of skilled workers in these remote communities. One is young people going through school right now, and the other is those who have either completed or left post-secondary education, who are adults now, and who are either unemployed or don't have the skill level that would allow them to be hired to work in some of these companies, because the skills required are at a certain level and they don't have that skill level now.
My first question is about our younger people. I think you mentioned the very high dropout rate from high school in some of these remote rural and aboriginal communities. I'm wondering if you've made any recommendations to the provincial and territorial governments, which have the primary responsibility for off-reserve education in this particular case, as to whether or not they should be looking at it, and whether we should be encouraging provinces to amend some of the curriculum so that we're focusing a little bit more on skilled trade courses and apprenticeship-type programs when young people are 15, 16, or 17, rather than waiting for the post-secondary level.
I guess my view around that is that perhaps if these young people felt there was a job for them at the end of the day, the dropout rate wouldn't be there. Maybe they don't think reading Shakespeare—although some may think reading Shakespeare is important.... Maybe that focus isn't really what's going to motivate them to continue to stay in school and then be that skilled worker when they leave post-secondary education at 17, 18, or 19, depending on what province it is.
Did you look at that at all in talking to our friends in the provinces and territories just generally around curriculum and how maybe we could focus more towards moving young people into this skilled work?
If anyone wants to.... I think GE did a little bit more work, maybe, than OPG did on that.