McGuinty Government Enriches Ontario Schools With Global Experience Of Internationally Educated Teachers



    $800,000 Investment Helps Foreign-Trained Teachers Gain Certification

    TORONTO, June 7 /CNW/ - Internationally-trained teachers are being given
the opportunity to contribute their unique global experience to Ontario's
classrooms thanks to the expansion of a dynamic bridging program funded by the
Ontario government, Minister of Citizenship and Immigration Mike Colle
announced today.
    "The McGuinty government is breaking down barriers for internationally
educated teachers to become certified to teach in Ontario," said Colle. "We
are investing in the province's future by assisting internationally trained
newcomers to contribute their talents and experience to Ontario."
    The government is providing $800,000 to the Ontario College of Teachers
to partner with a number of community agencies to deliver the Teach in Ontario
Employment Services Project. This project will assist internationally trained
teachers in the Greater Toronto Area, Ottawa, and Windsor to prepare for
employment and find work in Ontario schools:
    
    -  Three community agencies - Skills for Change in Toronto, Local
       Agencies Serving Immigrants in Ottawa, and Windsor Women Working with
       Immigrant Women - will match internationally trained teachers with
       mentors experienced in teaching in the Ontario school system.
    -  Involving the participation of the Ontario Teachers' Federation, the
       project also includes a classroom immersion component, a supply
       teaching workshop to prepare participants for employment, and an
       employer awareness workshop.
    

    These new services will build on the existing Teach in Ontario project,
which provides a broad array of support including sector-specific language
training, information and counselling. Since its inception in 2004, 1130
internationally-trained teachers have been certified by the Ontario College of
Teachers.
    "Thanks to Ontario's educators, our students are building their math
skills, learning more about the world around them and discovering their
potential," said Education Minister Kathleen Wynne. "The skills, and the
global education and experience internationally educated teachers bring to
Ontario are a further asset to our classrooms."
    "Internationally educated teachers are an important resource for
Ontario," said Brian McGowan, Registrar and CEO of the Ontario College of
Teachers. "They bring new ideas, a fresh perspective, often years of teaching
experience, and the cultural and language diversity that characterizes a
significant part of our student population. Many of them can offer skills and
experience teaching in areas where there are ongoing shortages such as French
as a Second Language and the sciences."
    Bridging programs are designed to provide newcomers with the language
training, potential for licensure and work experience they need to work in
various trades and professions. This new funding will bring the total
investment to over $53 million in over 90 bridging projects to assist
newcomers to find work in their field more quickly.

    Breaking Down Barriers for Newcomers
    ------------------------------------

    Today's announcement is just one more example of how, working together,
Ontarians have achieved results to break down barriers for newcomers. Other
initiatives include:

    
    -  Negotiating the first-ever Canada-Ontario Immigration Agreement, which
       provides an additional $920 million in federal funding for newcomer
       services over five years;
    -  The Fair Access to Regulated Professions Act, 2006, which became law
       in March 2007. The Act will ensure a fair, open and transparent
       process for obtaining registration and licensing in regulated
       professions for internationally trained individuals.
    -  Establishing the first-ever Office of the Fairness Commissioner which
       is responsible for assessing registration and licensing practices.
    -  Creating Global Experience Ontario, an Access and Resource Centre for
       internationally trained individuals.
    -  Increasing opportunities for International Medical Graduates (IMGs)
       from 90 to 200 annually, including 218 new IMGs in training and
       assessment positions last year.
    -  Creating a Foreign Trained Professionals Loans Program providing up to
       $5,000 per person to cover assessment, training and exam costs.
    -  Launching an immigration web portal, www.OntarioImmigration.ca to
       support newcomers both in Ontario and abroad, prior to arrival.
    -  Establishing the first provincial Internship for the Internationally
       Trained. Administered by Career Bridge, newcomers with a minimum of
       three years international work experience will be placed for six-month
       paid assignments within the Ontario Public Service and Crown Agencies.
    

    "This investment will help internationally educated teachers prepare for
certification and work in education that matches their skills and training,"
said Colle. "It will also help enrich Ontario's school community with new and
diverse global perspectives."

    
    Disponible en français

                          www.citizenship.gov.on.ca
                          www.OntarioImmigration.ca
    




For further information:

For further information: Media contacts: Rick Byun, Minister's Office,
(416) 325-3460; Michel Payen-Dumont, Communications Branch, (416) 314-7010

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Ontario Ministry of Citizenship and Immigration

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