May 1997


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College Assumes Responsibility
for Teacher Certification

The College has taken over responsibility for teacher certification from the Ministry of Education and Training. Holders of all OTCs, OTQRCs and Letters of Standing issued by the Ministry will be issued new certificates of registration and qualification.

Teachers who are registered with the College and whose membership is in good standing will receive a certificate this summer listing all their qualifications, along with their Certificate of Registration in the College and a membership card. Members who have questions or who want to bring the record of their qualifications up to date should contact the College’s Membership Services Department.

One-stop service for members

The Membership Services Department is the one-stop shopping window for all member services:

  • change of address and personal information
  • inquiry service for general College information, fees information or information about College services
  • registration of new members
  • fee payments
  • assessment of credentials for new graduates and out-of-province applicants
  • qualifications updates
  • duplicate documents
  • information about accredited faculties of education
  • letters of good standing
  • verification of membership and qualifications for employers
  • materials such as membership applications, newsletters, regulations and bylaws
  • information on Council and disciplinary panel meeting times/schedules.

The department’s state-of-the-art call centre is ready to handle a wide range of requests for information and services, with 12 staff available to provide bilingual services from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday to Friday. The College’s walk-in centre also provides personal service to members, applicants and employers.

Client Services Manager Marina Brasil says the College is making a real commitment to providing exceptional service. "The Ontario College of Teachers is working to be the best self-regulating professional organization in the country."

She said the staff hope that wider publicity about their services will encourage teachers to contact the College. "We’re looking forward to serving our members and we’ve worked hard to make sure it’s as easy as possible for teachers to get the information they require."

To contact Membership Services:

  • call toll-free in Ontario 1-888-534-2222 ext. 330
  • in the Toronto area, or outside Ontario, call (416) 961-8800 ext. 330
  • e-mail
  • come in person to the 6th floor, 121 Bloor Street East, Toronto.


Records Transfer Completed

College staff have completed the transfer of more than 250,000 teacher records from the Ministry of Education and Training to the Ontario College of Teachers.

The records, dating back to the 1940s, came from a variety of sources - paper files, microfiche, mainframes and microcomputers. Most information will now be stored electronically to allow for the on-screen evaluation of teachers’ credentials. It will also provide the College with the ability to provide quick responses to information requests from members and employers.

Members in good standing will now receive a certificate listing their updated qualifications every year. The first of these annual certificates will be issued this summer.

Members should check to make sure that the record of their qualifications is up to date. Members who have questions or comments should contact the College.


College of Teachers Fee
Matches the Lowest in Ontario

Teachers and nurses pay the lowest fees of all of Ontario’s 32 self-regulating professions. At $90 a year, the College of Teachers and the College of Nurses are tied for the lowest membership fees.

Fees for other professional colleges are substantially higher. The Law Society of Upper Canada’s annual fee is $1871. The yearly membership fee for the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario is $675; for the Institute of Chartered Accountants it’s $593. The Ontario College of Certified Social Workers annual fee is $284 and members of the College of Psychologists of Ontario pay $625.

College membership fees are tax-deductible.


College Membership Fees Due This Month:
Boards Will Deduct For Most Teachers

School boards across Ontario will deduct 1997 College membership fees from teachers’ pay cheques during May and June.

The single deduction of $90 will cover members’ fees for the calendar year - January 1 to December 31, 1997. This year’s membership fee also covers the election period that started in September 1996, in which teachers all over the province elected the majority of the College’s Governing Council.

If you are required - by law, regulation, job description, bylaw or resolution of a board of directors - to be a qualified teacher, you must join the College of Teachers and pay the annual membership fee. The $90 fee, which is tax-deductible, is the same for all College members, whether they work full or part-time.

Membership fees will be deducted from your pay cheque if you are:

  • a full-time or part-time teacher, academic supervisory officer, principal, vice-principal or co-ordinator/consultant in a publicly-funded school
  • a long-term occasional teacher who is currently a salaried employee in a publicly-funded school
  • a teacher in a private school where members contribute to the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan.

Payroll deduction will provide about 140,000 teachers and their employers with a simple, worry-free way to ensure that their professional fees are paid and their memberships are up-to-date. This method of payment also helps to keep College administrative costs - and membership fees - as low as possible.

Teachers whose fees are paid will receive a 1997 membership card, a certificate listing their professional qualifications and an income tax receipt.

Teachers who do not pay their fees through payroll deduction can use the form at the bottom of this page and mail their cheque for $90, made out to Ontario College of Teachers, P.O. Box 70471, Station A, Toronto ON M5W 2X5.

Any registered teachers who have not paid their membership fee by mid-July will be invoiced for their membership fees.

Controller Peter Brown says College staff will work flat out through the summer so that boards will be able to confirm teachers’ memberships in the College.

In future years, membership fees will be deducted near the beginning of the calendar year.

Registration fee is $25

Teachers who have already registered with the College of Teachers - including all employees of publicly-funded schools, who were automatically registered by their boards - were not required to pay the $25 registration fee. All new registrants will be required to pay the registration fee.


Ottawa Teacher First Head of College of Teachers

Donna Marie Kennedy, who was elected to the Governing Council from the separate system, was acclaimed as the first Chair of the College at the first official meeting of the Council on May 1.

Donna Marie Kennedy
Kennedy has taught Grades 1 to 9 in schools in Ottawa, Carleton, Toronto and Maynooth. She is also a special education teacher and formerly worked with handicapped adults in L’Arche Community. She is currently president of the Ontario English Catholic Teachers’ Association - Carleton.

The new Chair said that while she believes teachers have done a good job of shouldering responsibility for the profession in the past, "Our new

College has been given the unique task of collective responsibility for our profession, our professional education and for our professional needs. Our challenge will be to build on the excellent work teachers have done in Ontario and continue to improve in all these areas."

As Chair, Kennedy will be responsible for presiding at council meetings and the College’s annual general meeting. She will chair the Council’s Executive Committee and - along with the Registrar - signs all certificates of registration and qualification issued by the College.

John Cruickshank, principal of Marvin Heights Public School in Mississauga, was elected Vice-Chair of the College. He is a former instructor for the York University Faculty of Education and was the co-ordinator of elementary program development for the Ministry of Education’s Independent Learning Centre.
John Cruickshank

See the next issue of Professionally Speaking for a full report on the first official meeting of the Ontario College of Teachers Governing Council.


Teachers Elect Majority of College's First Council

Teachers' participation in the election of the College's first Council reflects an encouraging level of interest in their professional body.

At 32 per cent, the participation rate in the February 2, 1997 election was significantly higher than the normal turnout in elections for other self-regulating professions.

The decision to hold a mail-in ballot in the College's first election presented some logistical challenges but made it possible for 52,642 teachers across the province to participate in electing the Council.

To receive a copy of the final election results, please e-mail .