We are dedicated to strengthening the link between literacy and work.

PTP Compass is a social enterprise, and a division of PTP Adult Learning and Employment Programs, a community based organization located in Toronto, Canada. For over two decades PTP has delivered programs and services that have facilitated positive change to people facing literacy and other barriers to employment. We have helped over 22,000 people learn, find new opportunities and build futures!

The underlying challenge.

People who have low literacy skills and other barriers to employment often have limited training, educational and employment opportunities. Many ‘slip through the cracks’ of our current systems as they frequently face other, systemic barriers that further impede opportunities for success and economic independence.

In order to more broadly address this challenge, PTP launched Compass.

Compass is guided by our commitment to developing a strong, capable and sustainable workforce across Canada. It is built around the CAMERA System (Communications and Math Employment Readiness Assessment) and the resources that form part of the system. The end goal is to equip service providers across Canada with effective tools that tie together assessment and instruction in support of workforce-oriented literacy and essential skills programming.

Our approach.

PTP has trained hundreds of educators across Canada in the use of its resources, and adapted or created materials for Deaf, Aboriginal, Inuit, and Francophone populations. Our approach has been to listen, explore ideas, provide guidance, make recommendations and offer customized solutions.

The impact we hope to create.

We believe strongly that well-designed workforce training solutions will improve the social and economic well-being of Canadians, empowering them to find meaningful work and giving them hope for a better future.


PTP acknowledges that the land on which we gather is the traditional territory of the Wendat, the Anishnaabeg, Haudenosaunee, Métis, and the Mississaugas of the New Credit First Nation.

The treaty that was signed for this particular parcel of land is collectively referred to as the Toronto Purchase and applies to lands east of Brown’s Line to Woodbine Avenue and north towards Newmarket. We also recognize the enduring presence of the Aboriginal peoples of this land.

Selected research reports.

Through research and evaluation, PTP strives to provide effective, accessible, integrated and flexible workplace supports to those with literacy and language barriers to employment. To accomplish this, PTP seeks out research opportunities that contribute to the betterment, availability and accessibility of adult literacy programming and workforce training.


The Workforce Essential Skills across Canada project

WESCan (Workforce Essential Skills across Canada) was an Office of Literacy and Essential Skills funded project that saw PTP working closely with communities across Canada to build meaningful programming for low-skilled individuals. The project used the CAMERA System as its foundation, combined with the knowledge gained through years of research and analysis on effective ways to transition low-skilled adults to work.

Read the WESCan report.

Food for Thought

Piloting an Integrated Workforce Literacy and Essential Skills Pre-culinary Program

PTP, in partnership with MTML, applied for funding through The Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities to develop and deliver an integrated workforce literacy and essential skills pre-culinary program for marginalized adults. Read the report for a description of the pilot project and its outcomes as experienced by students and frontline staff.

Read the Food for Thought report.

Filling The Gap

Building communities to support the aspiring apprentice

Can Ontario’s community-based literacy programs prepare adult learners for apprenticeships that lead to employment in the skilled trades?

Read the Filling the Gap report to find out about the innovative work being done in programs that are already successfully linking learners to apprenticeship opportunities. Gain insight into the apprenticeship system in Ontario, and learn about how any community-based literacy agency can implement programming and build partnerships to make apprenticeship accessible to their literacy learners.

Read the Filling The Gap report.

Workforce Literacy and Essential Skills

Increasing student success through contextualized learning

This report offers practical information to programs that are considering initiating or extending workforce literacy programming with a focus on hands-on and authentic learning as an approach for developing literacy, numeracy and employment skills. The report provides an overview and exploration of effective and best practices from PTP’s Teamwork program and other adult literacy programs in Ontario as seen from the perspective of instructors and students.

Read the Workforce Literacy and Essential Skills report.

Get in touch.

Get answers about Consulting Services and CAMERA training options.
  • Contact Heather Paterson at compass@ptp.ca, or via the form below.

  • Prefer to talk instead? Contact Heather Paterson at 905-622-9208.

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Inquiries about publications? Questions about orders and shipping?
  • Contact Avis Henry at publications@ptp.ca, or via the form below.

  • Prefer to talk instead? Contact Avis Henry at 416-510-3266.

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Our team

Heather Paterson, Director

Avis Henry, Publications

Rohan Sagram, Marketing & Communications

Marie-Claude Rodrigues, CAMERA en français

Paul Brinkhurst, Nova Scotia Training

Karen Geraci, Consultant
inQuire consulting

Marisa Mazzulla, Consultant
inQuire consulting