Update: Men in Teaching
Reversing the decline
Government intervention is needed to reverse the decline in the number of men teaching in Ontario, says a new report.
Narrowing the Gender Gap: Attracting Men to Teaching recommends provincial government stewardship over a multi-year marketing campaign, longitudinal research and investigation of incentives to bring men into the profession.
Project partners stopped short of proposing changes to teacher salary grids - despite hearing that suggestion during extensive consultations with students, teachers, administrators, education stakeholders and community groups.
Jean-Luc Bernard, Directeur de l'éducation, Conseil scolaire de district du Centre-Sud-Ouest; David Hill, Director of the Trillium Lakelands District School Board; Pat Falter, Consulting Director, English Language School of Education, Laurentian University; and Ontario College of Teachers Registrar Doug Wilson released the study in November in response to school board hiring concerns about a lack of available male teachers.
College data shows a sharp decline in the number of younger men entering the teaching profession. Only one in 10 Kindergarten, primary and junior qualified teachers (Grades K to 6) under the age of 30 are men. One in five Junior-Intermediate qualified teachers (Grades 4 to 10) under 30 are men, and one in three Intermediate-Senior qualified teachers (Grades 7 to 12) under 30 are men.
Among its recommendations, the report proposes:
OECD critical of Canada
The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development has reviewed early-childhood learning and care in 20 countries. Its report calls for Canada to establish a coherent publicly funded universal system.
For the full report, visit www.oecd.org and type "early childhood education" in the search feature.
first seven years
New teachers certified by the College between July 1, 1997 and July 31, 2004: 68,235 - representing more than a third of the College's current membership.
Delegates from the Malaysian Ministry of Education visit to inform themselves on the College's legislative mandate and operations - including registration, accreditation and professional and ethical standards.
FROM LEFT: Malaysian Ministry representative Shahabuddin Bin Haji Ashari, External Relations Officer Kathy Anstett, Malaysian Ministry representative Dawi Bin Ithnin, Production Assistant Zul Bidin, Client Services Assistant Maala Nair, their Canadian host Andy Melnyk, Information Technology staffers Vivian Yap and Shan Palanisamy, and Executive Co-ordinator Richard Lewko
Doing us proud
Olympic gold medal canoeist and College member Larry Cain says that "teachers are the same type of people as athletes. They both bring passion to what they do."
Nowhere was that passion more evident than during 16 days in August as the 28th Olympic Games played out in Athens, Greece. A number of the teacher athletes we featured in our June 2004 issue threw, wrestled and swam their way across our television screens as Canadian fans cheered them on.
Leading the way was wrestler Tonya Verbeek of Beamsville. She won one of the few medals that Canada claimed in Athens, a silver in the women's 55-kg class.
She supply taught while training for the Games, but since bringing home a medal she hasn't been able to find much time to be in the classroom. Verbeek is busy with speaking engagements and fundraisers across the country and will resume her training this month.
Her wrestling teammate Christine Nordhagen didn't fare as well. A six-time world champion, Nordhagen finished fifth in the 78-kg class. Nordhagen is on a leave of absence from her job as a high school teacher with the Calgary Board of Education.
Softball player Alison Bradley wasted no time in getting back into the classroom. Only a week or so after returning from Greece, Bradley started her first full-time job, teaching instrumental music and French at her old high school, Walkerton District Secondary School. Bradley and her team finished fifth at the Olympics, winning three games and losing four. It was Canada's best-ever showing at the Games in women's softball, and Bradley is already thinking about playing for Canada at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing.
In the pool, Liz Warden of Scarborough had her best finish in the women's 400-metre individual medley, coming eleventh. Warden will complete her undergraduate degree in English at the University of Toronto this year. Plans for getting her education degree may have to be put on hold though. Warden is seriously thinking of competing for Canada at the 2006 Commonwealth Games in Melbourne, Australia, and is already back in the pool training.
Fencer Sherraine Mackay, who received her teacher training at the University of Ottawa, was 18th in the women's individual épée event at the Olympic Games. Mackay was considered a medal hopeful going into Athens and was very disappointed with her personal showing. She did however help the women's épée team to an incredible fourth place finish. Mackay, who lives and trains in Paris, France, is also considering competing in 2008 in Beijing.
Three of the teacher athletes we featured had to be content with watching the Games from home. Marathon runner Drew Macaulay was injured just two weeks before the final qualifying marathon, and fellow University of Windsor graduate Andy Hahn finished 13th and failed to make the qualifying standard for the Olympic team. Now recovered, Macaulay is training again and back in his Grade 7 classroom at Victoria Public School in Goderich. Hahn is also back teaching, at Century Secondary School in Windsor. As for the Toronto-based high jumper and high school science teacher Jeff Caton, he didn't make the cut at the Canadian Olympic Track and Field Trials - finishing fourth. He continues his daily training routine and teaching at Forest Hill Collegiate in Toronto.
College demos new services
The introduction of a new employer portal on the College web site was the hit of the College's annual employers' conferences in November.
Employers learned how to download relevant membership information from the public register for all College members in their employ, send data on teacher qualifications to the College in minutes and track membership status for employees certified by the College.
It was the sixth time the conference was offered in Toronto and the third time in northern communities.
"There are a lot of issues that employers need to deal with in employing our members," said Doug Wilson, Registrar and Chief Executive Officer, "and some of the information can be confusing. Bringing people together gives us an opportunity to cover topics that are timely and important, and it makes for a much smoother working relationship for everyone."
Among the topics the College covered this year were regulation in the public interest, internationally trained teachers, professional misconduct reporting requirements and the use of dispute resolution, the new online application process for Ontario graduates, and clarification about teaching assignments and qualifications.
Approximately 60 professionals participated in shorter sessions in Thunder Bay on November 9 and by videoconference on November 10, accessible at Contact North sites in Sudbury, Fort Frances, Kenora, Marathon, North Bay, Sault Ste. Marie, South Porcupine and Terrace Bay.
"Video conferencing is a boon to the College and some of our participants," said Wilson. "The north is a big place and it really helps when no one has to travel great distances to reap the benefits of these sessions."
The plenary session was conducted in English and French with simultaneous translation. Individual workshops were conducted in English or French (some with simultaneous translation).
Leadership challenges in francophone schools
Ontario Francophone principals take up their duties as a challenge and to make a difference. But many teachers hesitate to become principals - fearing the stress of added responsibilities and being caught in the middle.
These are only some of the findings of the first survey conducted by the Association des directions et des directions adjointes des écoles franco-ontariennes (ADFO) on the roles and responsibilities of school principals.
"The purpose of the survey was to find out what attracts teachers to administrative jobs and what discourages them," says Serge Plouffe, Director General of the ADFO.
ADFO plans to share its findings with the Ontario Ministry of Education, which recently began discussions on the roles and responsibilities of school principals.
For more information, visit www.adfo.org.
College staff attended several university fairs this fall, providing students with information on how to become certified to teach in Ontario.
VISITORS NEW ZEALAND & AUSTRALIA
Delegates from faculties of education abroad visit the College to exchange information about teacher-education programs, professional development, Ontario's registration and accreditation requirements and professional and ethical standards.
(LEFT): John Hope, Assistant Dean of the Faculty of Education at Auckland University
(LEFT): Frank McIntyre, Manager of Human Resources, and Déirdre Smith, Manager of Standards of Practice and Education, briefed David Comerford, Director of Dunedin College of Education, Southland Campus.
Family Literacy Day
Communities and educators across Canada will mark the 7th annual Family Literacy Day on January 27.
To help you participate, ABC Canada has created many bilingual awareness tools, and their web site provides suggestions for teachers, related to Family Literacy Day and ongoing literacy concerns.
Ben Levin has been appointed Deputy Minister of Education of Ontario, effective December 6, 2004.
Levin had recently accepted a professorial position at OISE/UT where he was nominated for a Canada Research Chair in Education Leadership and Policy. His active duties at OISE will now be postponed.
Levin was a professor in the Faculty of Education at the University of Manitoba where he also held the post of Dean of Continuing Education. He has previously served as Deputy Minister of Education, Training and Youth at the Department of Advanced Education in the Manitoba government.
Avis Glaze has been appointed Chief Student Achievement Officer of Ontario - responsible for setting up a new Literacy Secretariat at the Ministry of Education - effective December 2004.
An internationally recognized educator and Order of Ontario recipient, Glaze is a former commissioner of the 1994 Royal Commission on Learning. She co-authored Towards Freedom: The African-Canadian Experience.
She has served most recently as Director of Education at Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board and previously as Associate Director of Education at the York Region District School Board.
Glaze taught in the secondary school system and at the teacher's college in Jamaica before coming to Canada to study at OISE, where she completed a Doctorate in Education and two Masters programs, one in educational administration and the other in guidance and counselling.
Return books for free
Members who borrow books from the Margaret Wilson Library can now return them postage free.
The College's library was recently approved by Canada Post (CP) as a recognized circulating library, permitting it to mail books at reduced rates, effective October 12, 2004.
"This represents a big savings," says librarian Olivia Hamilton. "A package that previously cost $5.35 in postage, can now be sent for only 77 cents.
"And what's more, the postage paid at the time of mailing covers the return shipment." Books being returned to the library can be mailed at no cost using the CP-approved label that will be enclosed with the books.
Members are entitled to borrow up to eight items at a time, but the special mail rates apply only to books - not videotapes or other resources.
The Curriculum Foundation has announced this year's Janice Thomson Memorial Grant recipients - awarding $2,000 each to Marg Smits and Michael Shultz for the development of much-needed classroom resources. The projects of both address the needs of at-risk secondary school students.
Marg Smits developed her ACE Program at the Dufferin-Peel Catholic District School Board. It provides a model for operating an alternative program within a typical school day.
At the Peel District School Board, Michael Shultz undertook a Job Fair Showcase - highlighting the importance of career studies and co-op education.
All TCF-funded resources can be downloaded free at www.curriculum.org.
Youth Justice: Multimedia Information Program produced by the Department of Justice Canada is aimed at informing high school students.
The two-CD kit, available free, provides up-to-date information on the law and penal system as they affect adolescents in Canada today. It includes a teaching guide that offers advice on how to make use of the CDs with your students and ideas for related learning activities.
Order by e-mail via firstname.lastname@example.org or online at canada.justice.gc.ca/en/ps/yj/information/information.html.
TV Ontario's TVO, TFO and the Independent Learning Centre (ILC) announced improvements and additions to resources available for teachers this fall. For the full story visit www.tvo.org, www.tfo.org or www.ilc.org.
The 2004 Canada Post Literacy Awards were presented on September 8. Early Years Literacy Consultant for the Region of Peel, Luisa Beltrame of Mississauga, was named Ontario Literacy Champion in the Educator Category.
Awards for both English- and French-speaking educators begin with a nomination.
For information or to nominate a colleague, visit www.canadapost.ca literacyawards. The next nomination deadline is Friday, May 27, 2005.
Ontario Principals' Council
Former Ontario Justice George Thomson is to review current registration appeals processes at all regulatory bodies and develop a set of common principles on which to base a standard independent appeals mechanism.
Thomson will work with the regulators to review best practices for independent appeals that meet common standards of fairness and independence and to make recommendations for potential changes to regulations.
"By working with professional regulatory bodies, educators, employers and community groups, we can ensure that all Ontarians can use their skills and expertise to their fullest potential, thereby ensuring Ontario's prosperity," says Minister Chambers of Training Colleges and Universities, Mary Anne.
A former Ontario justice and recently executive director of the National Judicial Institute in Ottawa, George Thomson was appointed Judge of the Provincial Court for the Province of Ontario in 1972. He has served in numerous public service posts, including several deputy ministerial posts, and as Director of Education for the Law Society of Upper Canada, Ontario Deputy Attorney General and Special Advisor to the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada.
2005 Member fee pay $104
Payment due now:
You may also visit the College's walk-in centre on the 6th floor at 121 Bloor Street East in Toronto to pay in person by cheque, credit card, cash or direct debit.
To maintain a licence to teach in Ontario, members must pay annual fees by April 15.