People for Education – March 9

 

Where have all the guidance counsellors gone?

People for Education has released a new report showing that guidance counsellors in Ontario schools are spread too thin and their job lacks clarity.

The introduction of new policy to support students’ mental health, well-being, and social-emotional development has expanded the role of guidance counsellors beyond course selection and career planning. But the new report shows that only 17% of elementary schools have guidance counsellors, and schools in rural areas and small towns have less access than larger urban centres.

Among the findings:

  • 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.
  • 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
  • 94% of urban secondary schools have at least one full-time guidance counsellor, compared to 74% of small town–rural schools
  • 38% of urban elementary schools with grades 7 and 8 have a guidance counsellor, compared to only 10% of small town–rural elementary schools

The report includes recommendations for changes to policy and funding for guidance counsellors.

To read more, click here.

From OSAP to OSG: making post-secondary education more affordable

As part of its 2016 budget, the Ontario government has announced substantial changes to the Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP), making post-secondary education more accessible to low and middle income families.

Starting in 2017/18, the new Ontario Student Grant program will:

  • Provide grants that will more than cover the full tuition for eligible students whose parents earn $83,300 or less
  • Eliminate student loan debt for eligible students whose parents earn less than $50,000
  • Ensure that students receive as much or more aid through the new grant than they currently get through the 30% Off Ontario Tuition Grant.

For more information and examples of how the new grants will work, click here.

Ontario budget includes some funding for community hubs

But no movement on the hub committee’s “foundational” recommendation

Ontario’s recent budget extended the mandate of Karen Pitre, the Premier’s Advisor on Community Hubs, and included support for a resource network that will provide community organizations with access to information about setting up community hubs. The budget also referenced changes to policy that will make it somewhat easier for outside organizations to buy or lease surplus schools.

While there is some movement on community hubs, the province has yet to implement the recommendation that the Community Hubs Advisory Committee said was “critical for the successful implementation of the action plan.”

The Committee’s foundational recommendation was that the Premier appoint a permanent Provincial Lead for Community Hubs who would lead a process to“Formalize a structure to be responsible and accountable within government for overseeing the implementation of the Community Hubs Framework and Action Plan.”

For more information about the recommended Community Hubs strategic framework and action plan, click here.

Measuring What Matters update

Teachers in schools from London to Thunder Bay are working with People for Education’s Measuring What Matters team to try out the competencies and skills in creativity, citizenship, health and social-emotional learning that form the basis of the Measuring What Matters initiative. Reports are already coming back about how useful it is to have clear definitions of these “domains of learning.”

To find out more about Measuring What Matters, click here.

100 years of parent engagement

Congratulations to the Ontario Federation of Home and School Associations as it celebrates its centennial this year.

The oldest parent organization in the province, the OFHSA was founded on the vision of a “grassroots organization of men and women interested in improving childhood and childhood education”. Its founder, Ada Courtice, saw the Home and School as a “movement intended to educate parents for the betterment of children, of education and, ultimately, for Canadian society as a whole”.

One hundred years later, their tradition of parent engagement and public education advocacy continues.

Learn more about the history of OFHSA.

Social media this week

What people are talking about…

Sweden’s experiment with school choice through a voucher system didn’t work out so well.

Education reform, charter schools, and increased testing in the U.S. have had almostno impact on student results since the 1970s.

Meanwhile, German schools are showing improvement without dismantling public education.

Parents and schools are struggling with the consequences of a boom in French immersion programs and their impact on English classrooms.

Sexting: what parents need to know. Check out these tips from KidsHealth.

Is there a link between the decline in play and the increase in children’s mental disorders?

To keep up to date on all the latest social media news, check out our Facebookpage or follow us on twitter: @peoplefored, @anniekidder, @jacquistrachan.

EVENTS FIND MORE EVENTS

March 22 – Burlington

Join the Learning Disabilities Association of Halton for the 5th Annual Solutions for Learning Conference, with keynote speaker Lesley Andrew.

Read more

 

March 24 – Toronto

As part of its 2016 speaker series, Roots of Empathy is hosting an evening with guest speaker Alison Gopnick, who will be talking aboutPerspectives on Parenting.

Read more

 

April 7 – Toronto

Join the Ontario Coalition for Children and Youth Mental Health for its 2016 Summit. This year’s focus is Moving From Policy to Practice Through Collaboration.

Read more

April 14 – Toronto

The Ontario Healthy Schools Coalition is hosting its 2016 Forum, Achieving Educational Outcomes Through a Healthy Schools Approach.

Read more

People for Education – latest newsletter

 

Ministry releases new guide to Pupil Accommodation Reviews

“Why do school boards close schools?”
“How can I get involved in the process?”
“What happens when the accommodation review is completed?”

These are just some of the questions raised when it comes to closing schools. To help address these questions, the Ministry of Education has released a new guide to Pupil Accommodation Reviews. The guide provides parents and the broader community with information about the process school boards go through when deciding whether to close schools.

To read more, click here.
Join our discussion on school closings.

What have the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals got to do with Ontario education?

In a landmark agreement, tabled at the United Nations in September, countries from around the world—including Canada—committed to working toward 17 Sustainable Development Goals. The goals focus on ending poverty, fighting inequality, and tackling climate change by 2030.

Nearly every one of the goals is connected to public education. From environmental issues to global citizenship, the goals provide a framework for a forward-thinking vision for education.

To learn more about how you can join this international movement, click here.

Measuring What Matters in Africa

In early February, People for Education was invited to an extraordinary meeting in Zambia, led by the Brookings Institution and UNESCO’sLearning Metrics Task Force. At the meeting, we were struck by two things:

  • First, around the world, we share a desire to ensure that all young people have access to an education that includes not just the “3 R’s”, but also supports creativity, citizenship, social-emotional learning and health.
  • Second, how much Ontario has to learn from the rest of the world about the deeper purpose of education.

To read more, click here.

Does Ontario’s post-secondary education provide students with the knowledge and skills they need to succeed in life and work?

The Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario (HEQCO) has launched a ground-breaking project to measure students’ communications and problem-solving skills as they enter college or university, and then measure them again when they graduate.

To read The Toronto Star Article about the project, click here.
To read about HEQCO’s work on post-secondary learning outcomes, click here.

Social media this week

What people are talking about…

A number of countries are “contracting out” education.What happens if an education system is outsourced?

U.S. study finds that schools offering more physical activity had significantly better math scores.

Level Up is a free online resource from Ophea, supporting educators in promoting positive mental health and well-being.

Watch this touching story about an amazing caretaker who “makes his school shine, simply by being there”.

Do you know a teacher or school that is making an impact in Indigenous education? Nominate them for Indspire’s Guiding the Journey: Indigenous Educator Awards.

Students at a school in Gatineau were asked to fundraise $20,000 for desks and chairs. Is this a user fee for public education?

To keep up to date on all the latest social media news, check out our Facebookpage or follow us on twitter: @peoplefored, @anniekidder, @jacquistrachan.

People for Education – newsletter

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Reading our way into well-being

The National Reading Campaign is hosting a policy symposium, Making Change in Schools and Society: Reading our way into well-being, on February 5. The symposium will bring together policy makers, educators, researchers, library specialists and community advocates to explore the ways in which reading for pleasure can be enhanced in Canadian schools. How can we ensure that students have the opportunity to experience the joy of reading?

To read more, click here.

Government consultations focus on skills/job preparation

As part of the government’s overall focus on jobs and the economy, the Premier has appointed an expert panel to develop a strategy for ensuring that Ontario has the highly-skilled workforce it needs to be competitive in today’s economy.

The Highly Skilled Workforce Expert Panel and a provincial consultation onexperiential learning in Kindergarten to Grade 12, will focus on the skills and competencies that will prepare young people for future jobs.

  • Do you think K–12 and post-secondary students are being prepared appropriately to work in a knowledge-based economy? Contact the panel athighlyskilledworkforce@ontario.ca.
  • Do you have ideas about how to provide more experiential learning for students from Kindergarten to Grade 12? Click here to read more.
  • Do you think the province should articulate broader goals for kindergarten to grade 12 education that include skills for work and the competencies and conditions that prepare students to live happy, healthy, economically secure, civically engaged lives? Find out more at Measuring What Matters.

May, 2016 is the deadline for feedback.

What’s new on the website

Have you visited People for Education’s website lately? It is a great place to start if you are looking for education information, including:

Don’t forget to visit our Measuring What Matters micro-site to get the latest updates on the project and add your comments.

Social media this week

What people are talking about…

As US schools falter, Trump rises. Coincidence? Column says People for Education’s Measuring What Matters initiative vital.

How to be a better parent. 4 secrets backed by research.

School hockey program in Northern Ontario helps keep kids in class / out of trouble.

Top 10 skills for jobs are all life skills, according to World Economic Forum.

Trent U is offering a new Indigenous Bachelor of Education degree program.

Column says schools cannot, on their own, compensate for uneven educational playing field caused by child poverty

15-country research initiative (including People for Education) looks for effective ways to measure broad areas of student learning.

When students took to social media to complain about the lack of a ‘snow day’, school boards were quick (and funny!) in their responses.

To keep up to date on all the latest social media news, check out our Facebookpage or follow us on twitter: @peoplefored, @anniekidder, @jacquistrachan.

EVENTS FIND MORE EVENTS

Feb 6 –
London

The Thames Valley Parent Involvement Committee is hosting a symposium for parents. This year’s theme is “Building Parent Engagement Together”. 

Read more

Feb 17 – Toronto

Join Les Tablettistes, a bilingual forum for discussion and the exchange of ideas, for an exploration of the challenges and opportunities for the future in a digital world.

Read more

Feb 18-19 – Toronto

Reading for the Love of It is an annual language arts and literacy conference held in Toronto. In 2016 the organization is celebrating its 40th anniversary.

Read more

Feb 26 – Toronto

The Canadian Safe Schools Network is hosting its 19th Annual Safe Schools conference, with workshops on fostering and promoting student wellness. 

Read more

People for Education

People for Education 641 Bloor St. W. Toronto, ON M6G 1L1 Canada
jacqui@peopleforeducation.ca
http://www.peopleforeducation.ca/

People for Education is a registered charity, Charitable No. 85719 0532 RR0001.
Help support People for Education by making a donation today. Just click here.

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People for Education –

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Have a great holiday!

People for Education will be taking a break until the New Year. But we’ll be back with news about guidance counsellors and education funding, Measuring What Matters and more.

We all hope you get time to relax, spend time with family and eat too much.

Best wishes from Jacqui, Dave, Annie, Conrad, Elyse, Megan, Dan, Laurie, Katieand the People for Education board.

Schools welcome refugees

Opportunity for citizenship education

Schools across Ontario are gearing up to welcome newcomer children arriving from Syria and beyond. In some schools, the school community itself has organized to sponsor a refugee family—fundraising, planning and providing support to a family fleeing conflict and persecution.

Students and staff in these schools see sponsorship as not only a chance to help families in need, but also as a learning opportunity for global citizenship. This week, CBC’s the National connected the students at Dewson Street Junior Public School in Toronto, with the family they are helping to come to Canada.

Find out more about how your school can get involved at Schools Welcome Refugees—and check out a great selection of learning resources that will help bring refugee issues to life in any classroom.

Clarification re Ottawa-Carleton DSB French language education

Proposed changes delayed

In last week’s listserv, we failed to make it clear that many parents and teachers have raised concerns about proposed changes to Ottawa-Carleton DSB’s Core French and French Immersion programs.

On November 17th at a board meeting the trustees passed a motion that “the Board conduct further consultation on French instruction in kindergarten and primary Early French Immersion within a time frame for a decision that could be rendered for implementation in September 2017.”

Social media this week

What people are talking about…

Posted on our Facebook page: Fewer young people are voting. Find out how they engage and why in this report from Samara.

Read a short blog on citizenship education by Alan Sears and/or listen to the podcast of his presentation at our conference.

What should we teach our kids? In Bhutan, students practice mindful chocolate eating!

Great blog on measurement: The McNamara Fallacy and the Problem with Numbers in Education.

In this article, Wab Kinew and Annette Trimbee write about why Canada’s universities should mandate Indigenous courses.

This article about the teen brain will be helpful for anyone working with (or living with!) teenagers.

To keep up to date on all the latest social media news, check out our Facebookpage or follow us on twitter: @peoplefored, @anniekidder, @jacquistrachan.

EVENTS FIND MORE EVENTS

Jan 27 – 30 – Toronto

Join the Ontario Library Association for its Super Conference and Treasure Mountain Canada, focusing on Canadian research that impacts the role of school libraries.

Read more.

 

Feb 18-19 – Toronto

Reading for the Love of It is an annual language arts and literacy conference held in Toronto. In 2016 the organization is celebrating its 40th anniversary.

Read more

Feb 26 – Toronto

The Canadian Safe Schools Network is hosting its 19th annual Safe Schools Conference. The focus of this year’s event is student wellness.

Read more

 

April 13 – 14 – Toronto

The Ontario Healthy Schools Coalition is hosting its 2016 Forum. This year’s theme is achieving educational outcomes through a healthy school approach.

Read more

People for Education

People for Education 641 Bloor St. W. Toronto, ON M6G 1L1 Canada
jacqui@peopleforeducation.ca
http://www.peopleforeducation.ca/

People for Education is a registered charity, Charitable No. 85719 0532 RR0001.
Help support People for Education by making a donation today. Just click here.

You are receiving this email because you signed up on our website, at an event or when making a donation. |
If you no longer wish to receive emails from People for Education please unsubscribe. If this email was forwarded to you, please do not use the unsubscribe link: you will unsubscribe the original recipient.

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People for Education Newsletter

Click here for a link to the full site.

Education key to reconciliation

Justice Sinclair challenges Canadians

At a celebration on November 24th, hosted by TD Bank, Justice Murray Sinclair, Chair of Canada’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission, called public education the vehicle to ensure that children can move forward and keep society going in the right direction.

Sinclair said, “If you’re looking for something to do, I challenge you to do this: Read the Calls to Action. Pick one. Make sure it happens. That’s what I ask of you. You don’t have to try them all. Pick one and make it happen.”

Call to Action #62 b calls on governments to “Provide the necessary funding to post-secondary institutions to educate teachers on how to integrate Indigenous knowledge and teaching methods into classrooms.”

To read more of what Justice Sinclair said, click here.

Making Connections 2015

Conference focuses on citizenship, building broad skills

Citizenship prizes and mandatory community service are not teaching young people the skills they need to be engaged citizens, says University of New Brunswick professor, Dr. Alan Sears, keynote speaker at People for Education’s 19th annual conference.

Visit the conference website to watch Dr. Sears’ speech and read highlights from the discussion on citizenship education; check out the conference photo gallery and tweets; and watch the plenary panel with Carolyn Bennett, Craig Alexander, Wanda Nanibush and Faisal Moola.

Social media this week

What people are talking about…

“In Finland, play is a skill that is honed through experience…”
Pasi Sahlberg writes about what makes Finland’s education system unique,

How many cabinet ministers can you name?
In this video, a very young citizen schools us all!

“…enterprising curiosity, undefeatable spirit, tenacity, and above all, compassion.”This article looks at the essential role schools play in building community cohesion.

Changes to streaming and kindergarten. What can we learn from the great German school turnaround?

“…measuring social and emotional well-being offers schools another way to assess their efforts to help students.” American consortium describes new ways to measure success.

To keep up to date on all the latest social media news, check out our Facebookpage or follow us on twitter: @peoplefored, @anniekidder, @jacquistrachan.

Message from People for Education

Dear People for Education supporters,

Now that the federal election campaign is finally over, we can get back to thinking about our kids, our schools, and publicly funded education.

To do that, we need your help.

Your donations to People for Education fund vital research and ground-breaking new projects to help re-define success in education. With your help, we can ensure that every student has a chance for long-term success.

It is very easy to donate. Just click here and you’ll find a simple form to fill in.

Thank you SO much!

Annie Kidder

People for Education – Latest newsletter

This issue of People for Education’s newsletter includes:

  • Loss of mandatory census affects education funding
  • Don’t miss People for Education’s 19th  Annual Conference
  • Is Ontario going to get a provincial “Hubs R Us” office?
  • Need help? Talk to the Ombudsman.
  • New report recommends end to streaming in grade 9
  • Supporting social-emotional development through theatre

Please click here for the full issue.