The Ontario Real Estate Association (OREA) wants to see an overhaul of the Real Estate Council of Ontario’s (RECO) mandatory continuing education (CE) program.

“Continuing education is an important part of maintaining high professional standards in the real estate industry,” says Ettore Cardarelli, president of OREA. “The current system is failing Realtors and consumers. It’s time for a new vision.”

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RECO took over continuing education in 2013 and moved the program completely online. Since then, the quality of the courses has deteriorated, says OREA. “Content is infrequently updated and puts too much emphasis on convenience over important industry information. There is also no pass or fail requirement for the CE program, meaning a registrant could answer every question incorrectly and still make it through the course.”

The OREA REBBA Review Taskforce is asking for feedback on several proposals, including:

  • Enhancing the program by putting CE in the classroom
  • Making the CE program pass/fail
  • Requiring CE exams that are taken in person at an approved testing centre
  • Allowing colleges, universities and third-party providers universities to offer RECO-approved courses

OREA is releasing four white papers designed to encourage member discussion and feedback, which will inform the final recommendations that OREA presents to the government. Members can go to and submit feedback.


  1. ….a registrant could answer every question incorrectly and still make it through the course.” WTF!
    This is the new and improved way of educating people. This is what is going on in our institutional education system by the way. It’s all academic. Wouldn’t want to erode a student’s fragile little ego, would we, by failing them on an exam when they failed to perform. Let’s just protect them from what the real world has in store for them, shall we? Play Dough anyone? Let’s just ‘expose’ them to the material (whilst they are busy on their I phones/tablets etc.) and their spongy under-challenged mush-for-brains will automatically soak it all up. Who the hell needs to be able to call up the material correctly so that one can positively apply the knowledge in the real world? Just wing it!…with flightless full-of-holes sparsely-feathered faux wings! The consumers will never know the difference! They won’t know what you don’t know! What they (consumers) don’t know won’t hurt them! They won’t know that you are supposed to be able to fly! (metaphorically speaking).
    DODO birds were all birds of a feather…flightless feathers! None of them could fly! None of them stood out from one another! They went extinct! Why? Because they weren’t challenged by predators; none existed in their world. They didn’t have to be able to fly. Then hungry humans with wooden clubs came along. Complacency was the DODO’s undoing. Complacency is about to become the undoing of the old school real estate sales crowd’s culture. Predators (government types and a few real live real estate professionals who are advocating for professionalism across-the-board within the ranks) are now lurking in the bushes…for the first time ever in tandem. They are proactive-by-nature thinkers vs reactive-by-reflexive-knee-jerkiness let’s-protect-our-turf out-of-touchiness fear-of-change comfort artists.
    From extinction a new species will arise (consultants/advocates) but it will take some time. Just ask Darwin. It’s evolutionary my dear Watson.

    • Brian

      Being of a certain age group, although a little younger than me, you came into the OREA-educated real estate courses the same year I did. Courses with hardbound textbooks, in-room taught courses, professor style, and monitored exam rooms at the end of a course. No talking, no exiting the room during exams. Chalkboards became whiteboards with stinky magic markers.

      The textbooks nearly had to be memorized, in full, in part because there were no open-book exams. And of course no one knew from what portions of the textbooks exam questions would have been pulled.

      And as an aside: as to spelling – if a spelling error was found by the marker, a half or a quarter less mark would be the punishment. That in retrospect alludes to the content wasn’t required to be a hundred percent accurate, so long as the spelling was correct. We’re talking prepositions, adverbs, articles, not just nouns. (Smart phones auto-correct systems, these days could cause exam failure – lol.)

      There was no particular order of taking the courses, but in retrospect a suggested order I discovered would have been helpful.

      Some students (of what subject doesn’t matter) are better exam writers than others. There was a gal in our course groups who often made 100% on her paperwork. She lasted about two years in the real real estate world, and upon leaving the industry was heard to say she just couldn’t figure how some (such as moi) did so much business, straight out of the gate. It just wasn’t fair. It just wasn’t right. And I would not, likewise figure out that someone who wrote near perfect exams couldn’t make a worthwhile income. Perhaps it was her quiet sarcasm; yet a good social butterfly, batting eyes with management didn’t even help her.

      The current discussion brings back a memory of a Toronto publishing house working with (it would be called beta-testing today) a BC professor engaging in a British philosophy of the moment, trying to convince the school system of the rational, of beginning at kindergarten and or grade one level, to consider encouraging children to spell however they “heard” pronunciation, not correcting student spelling.

      Let children spell as they hear. If they heard the letter “c” as the “k” sound and spelled wrong, so be it. Permissible to write what they heard. Must not be corrected.

      When they got older, they would automatically correct their own spellings. We mustn’t injure Bobby’s psyche by correcting his spelling. It would be interpreted by the child as criticism. Maybe even child abuse. Thus, he would never succeed in school or in life. Correcting his spelling would subconsciously program him to fail.

      I didn’t do much elementary scholastic editorial work and when asked to participate I had a hard time wrapping my head around the concept. It was the late 60’s or early 70’s. Round about the time that open concept classrooms began appearing. Groups of grade 4, sitting in open classrooms with kindergarten and or grade 8 classes, the systems that were introduced in Bill Davis’ culture.

      Those BC:UK scholastic textbook systems, to the best of my remembering never got off the ground. I wasn’t interested in participating, so I went merrily on my way to other projects.

      A timely online news headline on Thanksgiving Monday, this year, October 9…

      “Thanksgiving can be tough on mental health of students…”

      No more Christmas carols, (only Jingle Bells songs), no more Christmas trees (only a holiday bush)… The future is often a repeat of the past?

      Happy Thanksgiving to our readers who celebrate.

      Carolyne L ?


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