Posts tagged ‘Ontario Ministry of Education’
Today, People for Education released a report examining the role of Ontario guidance counsellors in elementary and secondary schools.
The following selections are from their news release:
“Since 2012, Ontario’s Ministry of Education has introduced extensive new policy to support students’ mental health and well-being, their social-emotional development, and their capacity to plan for work and education after graduation. Each one of these policies references guidance counsellors as key supports, however the province has no clear job description for the role, and funding for guidance counsellors remained relatively unchanged since the introduction of the provincial education funding formula in 1998.
Findings from the report show that in 2016:
- The average ratio of students to guidance counsellors in secondary school is 381 to 1. In 10% of secondary schools the ratio is as high as 595 students for every one guidance counsellor.
- Only 17% of elementary schools have guidance counsellors. And even in schools with grades 7 and 8, where research shows a high need for guidance support, only 25% of elementary schools report having a guidance counsellor, and very few have a counsellor full-time
The report recommends that the province take the following actions:
- Evaluate the range of current education policies that may include guidance counsellors in order to rationalize Ontario’s guidance programs and create greater alignment across the range of policies.
- Clarify the role of both elementary and secondary school guidance counsellors in a way that recognizes both the breadth of their responsibilities and their relative scarcity in Ontario’s K-12 schools.
- Improve elementary school guidance capabilities by altering the funding formula so that per pupil funding for guidance counsellors is provided for students in grades 7 and 8 at the same rate as it is for secondary school students.
- Explore cost-effective ways for guidance staff supports to be expanded in small-town rural areas where they are currently lacking compared to their urban-suburban peers.”
Here is the full 14-page report:
Hamlin, D., Hagen Cameron, D. & Watkins, E. (2016). Ontario’s guidance counsellors: Spread thinly in an environment of growing expectations. People for Education. Toronto. Retrieved from http://www.peopleforeducation.ca/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/P4E-Guidance-2016.pdf
Check it out!
The Ontario Ministry of Education is offering a consultative process regarding provincial and demonstration schools, see here.
From their site:
“Provincial and demonstration schools provide programs and services for students who are Deaf or hard of hearing, blind or have low vision, deafblind, or have learning disabilities. The ministry is consulting with our education and community partners to explore ways to provide a range of quality programs and services that best meet their needs.
By working directly with students, families and education and community partners, these consultations will explore how students currently attending selected provincial and demonstration schools can be best supported to develop the knowledge, skills and characteristics to be personally successful, productive and actively engaged citizens.
Discussion papers have been developed to gather input. The public is invited to provide online input by responding to the surveys that are attached to each of the discussion papers. The deadline for written submissions is April 8, 2016.
Students, families and education and community partners will also be invited to attend face-to-face meetings so their perspectives can be shared.”
Check it out!
From the announcement:
“This resource provides 130 ready-to-use lesson plans per grade, student templates and assessment tools.”
“Each grade in Ophea’s H&PE Curriculum Resources: Grades 1-8 includes:
- Introductory content with detailed background information
- 20-25 units including unit overviews, lesson plans and additional teacher and student resources
- Division-specific appendices which include warm-up and cool-down activities, a safe stretching guide, program planning information and four sample timetables as well as teaching and learning tools and strategies”
To access these resources, teachers must belong to subscribing organization, which TDSB does/is. You can find the TDSB password on the Teaching & Learning TDSBweb site >Health & Physical Education > Resources. “Please note that the subscriber login process has changed. To access Ophea’s H&PE Curriculum Resources, all individuals from subscribing organizations will now need to login using a personalized ophea.net account.”
Note too (from the January 2016 e-connediton):
“Join us for three webinars to support the implementation of the elementary Human Development and Sexual Health curriculum and Ophea’s new lesson plans. The webinars will be available in English and French to all Ontario educators and public health professionals (no subscription needed and will be provided at no cost).
Webinar #1:Understanding the Human Development & Sexual Health Curriculum and Ophea’s New Implementation Supports: Grades 1-8
Date: January 25, 2016 (French is January 26, 2016)
Time: 4:00 pm – 5:00 pm EST
For more information, and to register click here. ”
Check it out! Rowan
On Wednesday December 9, TDSB released the results from the first-ever adult student census.
From the TDSB News Release: Quick Facts
- Student Demographics: 44% of adult students have lived in Canada for less than 4 years; a further 18% have lived in Canada between 5 and 9 years.
- Household Income: 77% of adult students reported an annual household income of less than $30,000; results from the TDSB’s 2012 Parent Census showed that only 28% reported an income in this lower category
- Overall School Climate: 85% of adult students had positive experiences at school all the time, and 92% felt safe in the classroom
- School-Work-Life Balance: Only 47% of adult students were able to find time for both school work and family responsibilities; only 43% felt able to balance school work with job responsibilities.
- Emotional Well-being: Around two thirds (64%) of adult students had higher levels of emotional well-being and around a third (36%) had lower levels of emotional well-being (feeling depressed, overwhelmed, stressed).
From the TDSB Research Department page:
The Census results will help inform adult education programming and planning across the TDSB and support the province in developing evidence-based policies for adult students….By capturing data on the unique educational experiences and histories of adult students, we can accurately determine the best supports to help them reach the highest levels of academic and personal success.
4 Fact Sheets are presented:
- Fact sheet 1: Demographic Profile
- Fact Sheet 2 : School experiences and emotional well being
- Fact sheet 3 : In school experiences by student groups
- Fact sheet 4: Emotional well-being by student groups
Click on these links for For more information about adult education in TDSB, and Ontario, and specifically the 2005 report Ontario Learns – Strengthening our Adult Education System.
The package includes links to recent documents and videos available via the Ministry, EduGains or Learn Teach Lead, under the following headings:
- Mathematics Instruction
- Literacy Instruction
- Vibrant and Equitable School Communities
- Resources of Offer Parents
- Of note for school leaders
Check ’em out
Today the Ministry has published a news release titled Protecting the Health and Well-Being of Students: Ontario Engaging Parents on Health and Physical Education Curriculum.
Remember when they released the new elementary Phys Ed curriculum a few years ago, there was public controversy about the health curriculum, mainly the sex ed section? Elementary Interim Guide and Secondary.
This is the government response. Parents [one parent from every elementary school. One??? ] will have an opportunity to complete a secure survey, and the Ministry will consider research and information from “earlier consultations and focus groups”. The outcome will be an “current, relevant and age-appropriate Health and Physical Education curriculum” for September 2015.
From the news release, Quick Facts:
- “The Growth and Development section of the elementary Health and Physical Education curriculum has not been updated since 1998 – before the widespread use of social media and smartphones.
- This current round of consultations builds on the earlier consultations and focus groups with students, teachers, parents, faculties of education, universities and colleges, as well as other organizations and stakeholders. More than 70 health-related organizations submitted reports for consideration and more than 2,400 people provided feedback on the draft curriculum.
- Studies have shown that girls as young as seven and eight years old are entering puberty, which is significantly earlier than in previous generations.
- The World Health Organization has found that providing kids with comprehensive sexual health information helps prevent early sexual activity and negative health outcomes”.
Check it out!
So, as I noted, it has been a busy few days for the Ministry. Feast or famine!
This is the link to the Ministry’s News Release page:
In addition to additional funding for technology learning, the Ministry has released a new document (actually, it is plan of action) titled Achieving Excellence: A renewed Vision for Education in Ontario.
In the Fall of 2013, “individuals and organizations across the province came together to consider and discuss the skills and knowledge Ontario learners will need in the future. The government received input from representatives within the education system, including parents and students, teachers, support staff and school and system leaders, as well as input from individuals and groups outside the education sector, including businesses and non-profit organizations. Achieving Excellence is the result of their feedback.”
The initiative revolves around four key interconnected goals:
- Achieving excellence (academic success, good citizenship)
- Ensuring equity
- Promoting well-being (mental and physical health)
- enhancing public confidence
From the news release … “Guided by Achieving Excellence, the province will focus on achieving tangible results, such as:
- Expanding hands-on programs like Specialist High Skills Majors and Dual Credits
- Recognizing learning opportunities outside of school, including community-based, civic, humanitarian, scientific, artistic and international experience
- Increasing graduation rates and closing achievement gaps for First Nations, Inuit and Métis students, children and youth in care, and students with special needs
- Working with education and health partners to improve and expand health services for students and families
- Working with partners inside and outside of school to encourage students to be physically active and practise healthy lifestyles
This document is a must read for all Ontario teachers.
Check it out