Our Standards

View OCA 2024 Standards

What are OCA’s Standards?

Our more than 600 Standards are based on research, regulation, and best practices. The OCA Standards are designed to ensure that OCA Accredited Camps and Outdoor Education Centres deliver a program and experience that is safe, fun, and of a high quality. They cover all aspects of camp and outdoor education safety including facility, health care, food service, program, transportation, as well as management and staff hiring and training.

Why choose an OCA Accredited Camp or Outdoor Education Centre?

As Accredited OCA Members, camps and outdoor education centres belong to an organization that is recognized worldwide for its commitment to making Ontario a premiere destination for camping. Our Members maintain the highest standards to give families and guardians peace of mind.

To qualify for accreditation, all applicants must:

  • Follow the OCA Standards for professionalism, accessibility, and safety.
  • Follow all relevant provincial and federal government legislation.
  • Be visited regularly for re-accreditation.

How do I know I’ve chosen an OCA Accredited Camp or Outdoor Education Centre?

I’m considering enrolling a child in a Forest School at an OCA Accredited Camp or Outdoor Education Centre – does that mean the Forest School is accredited?

Forest Schools are becoming a popular way to connect children with the outdoors in an educational manner, something that camps and outdoor education centres have been proudly doing for many years. We would like to remind families that the Ontario Camps Association currently accredits Day Camps, Overnight Camps and Outdoor Education Centres. At present, we do not have Standards in place to adequately offer accreditation to Forest Schools. If you have questions regarding specific programs being offered, including Forest School programs, the expectations and how the programs operate, we encourage you to reach out to the camps/providers of those programs directly and make sure you are comfortable with the policies and procedures in place.
A compass sitting on the grass.

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