Ontario’s French Teacher Recruitment and Retention Strategy (2021-2025)
Learn about our plan to attract and retain more French teachers in Ontario schools.
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Our French Teacher Recruitment and Retention Strategy is a four-year, multi-pronged strategy that aims to address the French language and French as a second language (FSL) teacher shortage in both the French and English school systems.
Our strategy consists of four actions to improve the recruitment and retention of French language teachers.
Building awareness of teaching pathways, including recruitment efforts in French-speaking jurisdictions abroad
We aim to increase the number of certified teachers by:
- Recruiting qualified, internationally educated teachers from French-speaking regions into the French language and English language school boards.
- Promoting the various ways through which secondary school students and other individuals hired in French language school boards on Letters of Permission can pursue teaching. A Letter of Permission authorizes a school board to employ an individual who is not a member of the Ontario College of Teachers (that is, not a licensed teacher) for a period of up to one year.
Removing barriers to teacher training programs
We will work with French language faculties of education at the University of Ottawa, Laurentian University and the Université de l’Ontario français to enhance the admission process to Initial Teacher Education programs.
In addition, we will seek proposals from program providers with a goal of funding the delivery of flexible and targeted programming and services that will help to increase the pool of French as a second language teachers in elementary schools.
We will also consult with faculties of education and school board associations to enhance the Initial Teacher Education FSL program for elementary teachers, with a focus on removing barriers to enrolment and promoting a successful transition to the teaching workforce.
Improving flexibility of teacher training programs
The development and delivery of flexible Initial Teacher Education programs for all subjects and grades is at the forefront of our plan.
To increase program flexibility, we will work with sector partners to explore broadening the scope of practicum placements across divisions and subject areas. We will also work with sector partners to increase flexibility of practicum supervision to a wider pool of qualified teachers to supervise and assess teacher candidates during their practicums.
Ensuring supportive teaching environments
To support inclusivity and diversity in the teaching profession, we will develop and implement various resources and initiatives in school boards, such as professional development opportunities to better equip teachers and education leaders with the knowledge and skills to effectively identify and address systemic barriers. We will also develop supplementary resources to support identified needs of internationally educated teachers.
As we implement this plan, we will evaluate it by measuring outcomes from each of the actions over the next four years. We will collect baseline data where appropriate to assess various indicators of success, including if there is:
- a lower number of individuals on Letters of Permission
- an increase in enrolment in Initial Teacher Education programs of prospective French teachers
- a higher retention of qualified teachers
How we developed the plan
The actions in this strategy are informed through consultation with the Working Group on the Teacher Shortage in the French-language Education System, which included representatives from:
- the teacher federation, Association des enseignantes et des enseignants franco-ontariens (AEFO)
- school boards, Association franco-ontarienne des conseils scolaires catholiques (AFOCSC) and Association des conseils scolaires des écoles publiques de l’Ontario (ACÉPO)
- the Ministry of Education
Other stakeholders were consulted, such as the:
- Ontario College of Teachers
- two French Language faculties of education at University of Ottawa and Laurentian University
- French principals’ association
- Centre Franco, an organization that develops resources and pedagogical material for French Language education
The French as a Second Language actions in the strategy are informed by key findings and recommendations from the FSL Ontario Labour Market Partnership (OLMP) Project.