To Oshawa Minor Hockey and OCHL families,
We hope everyone has been enjoying their summer, and is looking forward to returning to the ice
At this point in time we wanted to reach out to update you on some significant/important developments that have occurred recently between Oshawa Minor (OMH) and the OCHL. As most of you are aware, since the 2017/18 season all minor hockey associations have had to implement the Hockey Canada pathways for the U7, U9 and U11 age groups.
This process has taken part over several installments and is now coming to full fruition beginning in the 2023-2024 season. The final aspect of the pathways that will be coming into force next season is the elimination of all representative or MD hockey for U9 and below age groups - meaning that all hockey programming offered for U9 and below will be considered Houseleague (HL) or Local League (LL).
This is being done for a variety of reasons, but central among them is the goal to have all players offered the same opportunities and to increase development for all through a fun and engaging environment. While this does mean that all players will be rostered as HL, please rest assured that efforts will still be made to group like skilled players with each other so that brand new players are not always playing with players who have been skating for several years already and vice versa.
So what does this mean for hockey in Oshawa and how does this impact your child?
The Oshawa Minor Hockey Association (OMH) and the Oshawa Church Hockey League (OCHL) are very happy to announce the next step in our partnership. Based on the changes mentioned above, and the reality that there will be no MD programming offered next year, Oshawa Minor and the OCHL have agreed to work together to offer an enhanced development program for all players beginning this season.
Starting in the 22/23 season Oshawa Minor will no longer be offering a U8 MD program due to the fact that players would not be able to continue playing MD next season and we encourage all players to register with the OCHL. U9 MD will still be offered for one more season (22/23) as they will move into U10 next year which still offers traditional representative and houseleague programming options. We encourage any 8 year old (2014 birth year) players who currently reside in Oshawa and are interested in playing U9 MD this season to register with Oshawa Minor by visiting - https://oshawahockey.com/Forms/7278/Development_Program_Registration_-_U9/ Please note, that as per OMHA residency rules, only players who currently live in Oshawa are able to register for U9 MD.
In regards to seven year olds (2015 birth year), instead of U8 MD, OMH will be offering extra development skates each week that will be held in addition to the base of two hours (one practice and one game) offered through the OCHL. These extra skates are not mandatory but instead open to any players who are looking for additional development. The skates will be run by senior Oshawa Minor mentors/coaches as well as various development vendors in the area who already work with many Oshawa Minor teams.
In essence, all seven year olds will be able to receive, two hours of ice per week through OCHL (HL) programming and if they are interested they can also get an extra hour of ice at minimum (for a total of 3 per week) - if there is enough interest from players/families there may also be an opportunity to offer one more development session each week as well (for a total of 4 hours - 2 through OCHL and 2 through OMH). These additional skates will be offered for a minimal fee and registration and further details about them will be released in the coming weeks. Players who are interested in these additional skates need to ensure that they are registered with the OCHL (cannot be registered to both the OCHL and OMH) and then an online sign up will be offered through OMH in order to plan for the extra development skates.
Oshawa Minor recognizes that this news may be disappointing for some families who had already registered their child for U8 MD and we apologize for the change in programming being offered. The goal for both OMH and the OCHL is to offer a strong and fun development program for all young players moving forward - there are sure to still be some speed bumps along the way but both organizations strongly believe that this is a step in the right direction and a move that will continue to improve hockey within Oshawa.
Below is the breakdown of what programming will look like over the next two seasons:
1. Based on the full implementation of the Hockey Canada pathways, OMH will not run U8 MD teams and will instead encourage all currently registered players to register with the OCHL where they will receive two hours of ice per week (one game and one practice).
- All U8 (2015) aged players will have the opportunity to register for additional development skates for an additional fee (up to 2 extra hours per week depending on ice availability and player interest) that will be run by OMH.
2. OMH will continue to offer 2 MD teams at the U9 (2014) age group - players must currently reside in Oshawa in order to play MD
. Players who are interested in playing on one of these teams will register with OMH. These teams will receive 3 hours of ice per week (2 practices and 1 game - full ice come January).
3. All other players for U9 and below will register with the OCHL and will be rostered as houseleague, where they will receive the base rate of 2 hours of ice per week - OCHL will not be offering Select at the U9 age. OMH coaches, development mentors and players will assist with development skates and practices as needed/available (primarily held on Saturday mornings) for all applicable age groups (i.e. U6 - U11).
2023/2024 Season and beyond:
1. In accordance with the Hockey Canada pathways ALL U9 and below players will register with the OCHL in order to play on HL teams:
- U5 and below will receive 1 hour of ice per week
- U7 will receive 2 hours of ice per week
- U9 will receive 2 hours of ice per week (1 practice and 1 game) as a base; any players wanting additional development will be offered an additional 1-2 hours of ice per week run by OMH for an additional fee (number of extra hours of ice offered will be dependent on ice availability, player numbers, instructor availability, etc). Interested players will need to register for additional OMH skates.
- U10 and above will continue with traditional houselague and representative team programming.
We recognize that many of you may still have questions about what is being offered this season and into the future, which is why Oshawa Minor and the OCHL will be offering a joint in person Q&A/Town Hall session for all parents with kids in the U9 and below age groups (2014, 2015, 2016) on Thursday August 18th at 7:00pm in the Delpark Homes Centre Leisure Room
In the meantime, if you have any questions please reach out to [email protected]
or [email protected]
OCHL and OMH Executive teams
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
1. I have already registered my 7 year old for the U8 MD program, but now have to register for the OCHL - how do I go about doing this?
If your son/daughter has registered for Oshawa Minor before you are now going to register with the OCHL, please click on the following link and follow the steps provided: https://ochl.net/Articles/5028/2022_2023_Registration_is_now_open_/
2. I had registered my son/daughter to play HL but am now interested in registering my child for one of the Oshawa Minor Hockey U9 MD teams - how do I do this?
If you currently live in Oshawa and want to register your child (born in 2014) for Oshawa Minor U9 MD please visit the following web page and insert the necessary information: https://oshawahockey.com/Forms/7278/Development_Program_Registration_-_U9/
3. My child has never played hockey before, but is interested in trying it. Where/how do I register?
Please visit https://ochl.net/Pages/3694/NEW_PLAYER_Registration/
and follow the steps in order to register your child.
4. If all 7 year old players will be playing houseleague this season, how is their development being improved when some players have already been skating for years and others are just starting out/learning how to skate?
We recognize that there will be a variety of skill levels among the players - as a result efforts will be made to group like skilled players with each other so that they will be practicing and playing with others at a similar skill level.
5. Will I be able to sign my child up for some of the additional development skates offered by OMH to see if they like them and decide whether or not to sign them up for more later?
Due to planning needs (i.e. number of kids, how much ice is needed, etc) we will require that those interested in attending the extra skates, sign up and pay for all skates in total at the beginning of the season - there will not be a pay as you go option, however there may be some additional spots that become available depending on the number of original registrants.
6. Can anyone sign up for the additional development skates being offered/run through Oshawa Minor Hockey?
These skates will be offered to all 2015 born players this season (2022/23) and all U8 and U9 players next season (2015 and 2016 birth years). Additional information will be provided once we have an idea about how many kids are planning to take part in these sessions.
7. Who are the additional skates meant for?
Although these skates will be geared slightly more towards advanced players, they will be open to anyone who is interested in participating. The goal behind these skates is to offer additional development opportunities for players who are interested in getting on the ice more and working on their skills while still having fun. Players will also have a chance to experience some of the various skill vendors that are offered to and work with the OMH Rep teams.