Questions for political representatives during Ontario's election
- The pandemic has exposed deep cracks and significant inequities in the education system. Even before the pandemic, education policy goals were not aligned with the rapidly changing world.
What is your party’s vision for long-term renewal in education?
- For the last two years, the independent COVID-19 Science Table has provided evidence and advice for Ontario.
Will your party commit to convening an Education Table to provide advice and evidence to support effective decision-making in the education system?
- Academics, educators, principals, and students agree that the hybrid model – where teachers teach students in-person and online at the same time – is unworkable.
Does your party have a plan to discontinue hybrid learning?
- Currently, it is mandatory for school boards to provide families with the choice to have their children do all their learning online. Ontario is one of the only jurisdictions in Canada to mandate this choice.
Will your party end the policy mandating boards to provide online schooling to elementary and secondary students? If so, when?
- Currently, Ontario’s Education Quality and Accountability Office (EQAO) tests all students’ reading, writing, and math skills in Grades 3, 6, 9, and 10. Many experts point to the importance of a wide range of transferable skills beyond the “3 R’s.”
Does your party have a plan to move beyond standardized testing of all students in the 3 R’s so that Ontarians have a broader picture of the overall success of our education system?
- Ontario has pledged to provide 71,000 new registered child care spaces by 2026 (far fewer than the 200,000 spaces experts say are needed).
What will your party do to increase the number of qualified Early Childhood Educators so that new child care spaces can be appropriately staffed?
- Recent research shows that most high schools are not able to provide smaller class sizes to support de-streaming in grade 9. In September 2022, all grade 9 classes will be de-streamed.
What is your party’s plan to ensure smaller class sizes for the newly de-streamed grade 9 so that the implementation of de-streaming is successful?
- Less than half of Ontario’s principals report their school has the resources necessary to support the mental health and well-being of either students or staff. In a recent CAMH survey, 39% of students reported that the COVID-19 pandemic had negatively affected their mental health.
What is your party’s long-term plan to make schools hubs of support for student and staff mental health?
- Systemic racism in the education system has marginalized, disenfranchised, and disadvantaged many of Ontario’s students.
What are your party’s specific goals to eliminate racism in the education system, and in what concrete ways will your party report on progress toward more equitable access and outcomes in education?
- Education is a fundamental human right, but currently we do not define the quality of education that all students should have a right to access. If all students could realize their right to a high-quality education, they would have more equitable access to all their other civil, political, cultural, and economic rights.
What would your party do to clearly define quality education and how will it report on its progress toward a right to quality education for every student?
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