Gearing Up

Measuring Ontario’s Progress

Ontario’s Middle Years Profile of Wellbeing

Ontario’s Middle Years Profile of Wellbeing presents a set of 23 outcomes and 75 indicators, which were selected to create a wholistic picture of how middle years children are doing in Ontario. The outcomes provide an ideal reality that we hope all children and families can experience. The indicators allow us to know, each year, how many children and families are getting closer to reaching that reality.

More than 200 possible indicators were reviewed. The indicators that were selected scored high on the following criteria:

At times we encountered limitations in the data landscape in Ontario, such as limited data representing children ages 612, partial age coverage (e.g., ages 11 and 12 only in some cases), infrequency of surveys and, in some cases, survey exclusion of Indigenous peoples living on reserves.

Why a profile?

The Middle Years Profile of Wellbeing will help us to better understand how middle years children and their families are doing, and to help identify areas where additional focus may be needed. It is a commitment to paying attention to the wellbeing of children and families.

It is also a “snapshot” in time – a story of a generation, their context and overall wellbeing. It will be updated annually to be able to track progress.

The value is not found in the individual data points but in the overall picture that the profile creates about a unique cohort of middle years children.

While the profile does not necessarily reflect the experiences of all individual young people, it does play an important role in painting an overall picture of how children are doing, and what more is needed to help them to thrive.

How was the profile developed?

The outcomes were selected based on research and in consultation with stakeholders and families. For each outcome, indicators were selected based on available research. We also referred to Stepping Up: A Strategic Framework to Help Youth Succeed to find areas of alignment.

The indicators rely on data that is collected on a regular basis. It is publicly reported data. It includes population-level data, as well as data on government programs where available.

Ontario’s Middle Years Profile of Wellbeing

Children Are Active and Well

Ontario children play and are physically healthy

Ontario children feel happy and mentally well

Ontario children learn and practice healthy habits and connect to the natural world

Children Have Caring and Connected Families

Ontario children have at least one consistent caring adult in their lives

Ontario families are financially stable and secure

Ontario families are supported to thrive and are active in their children’s lives

Children Have Positive Relationships

Ontario children form and maintain health and close relationships

Ontario children respect others and value diversity, equity and inclusion

Ontario children feel safe at home, school, online and in their communities

Children Engage in Learning

Ontario children are curious and love to learn

Ontario children have relevant learning experiences that address their diverse interests, strengths, needs and abilities

Ontario children gain the knowledge and skills they need

Children Feel Valued

Ontario children are discovering who they are and who they want to be

Ontario children are proud of their cultures and identities and live free from discrimination

Ontario children can express what matters to them

Communities Support Children and Families

Ontario families inform the decisions that affect them

Ontario families know about and easily access quality resources in their communities

Ontario service providers, governments and communities foster belonging and wellbeing for kids and families

Indigenous Children Thrive

All First Nations, Métis and Inuit children and families are physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually well

All First Nations, Métis and Inuit children participate in and feel proud of their traditions, languages, cultures, and identities

All First Nations, Métis and Inuit children are engaged in and contribute to their families, communities and cultures

All First Nations, Métis and Inuit families and communities are supported to be self-determining in defining and meeting the needs of their children, families and communities

All service providers, governments and Indigenous communities respond to local needs and priorities and are accountable to communities