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Ontario Government Invests $180 Million To Boost Math, Writing and Reading Skills

The Ontario government is launching new initiatives to boost math, writing, and reading skills for students across the province. With an investment of more than $180 million, the government says it aims to provide targeted support both in the classroom and at home to help students develop the skills and knowledge they need to succeed in the workforce.

The plan is designed to raise standards, ensure consistency, and focus students’ time in the classroom on building a life, job, and critical thinking skills. It will support nearly 1000 more educators to help students develop these important skills.

“We are getting back to the basics because that’s what matters most when it comes to students’ skills with reading, writing, and math,” said Stephen Lecce, Minister of Education. “I am proud to unveil Ontario’s plan to boost literacy and math skills, designed to deliver better schools, jobs, and outcomes for students.”

The province’s plan to boost math skills will support more than 300 educators to support student learning in math, double the number of school math coaches in classrooms to provide direct support to teachers and students, introduce one math lead per board to spearhead math curriculum implementation and standardize training, and expand access to digital math tools that students and parents can access anytime.

To help more young students build stronger reading skills, the province is investing $109 million in 2023-24 to boost literacy rates. The investment will introduce new, Canada-leading, early reading screening requirements for all students in Year 2 of Kindergarten to Grade 2, along with a standardized and fully funded screening tool and training for educators, to ensure students receive the necessary foundational skills and early interventions in reading that are critical to future success.

The investment will fund additional specialist teachers who can work one-on-one or in small groups to help students who need additional support in reading, invest in almost 700 educators to support the development and excellence in literacy for Ontario students, and introduce an overhauled language curriculum in September of 2023 with an emphasis on ensuring students at an early age can master basic literacy.

“This investment is an investment in our kids’ futures. Supporting them to develop strong, life-long skills in important areas like reading, writing, and math will set our kids up for success in the long run,” said Patrice Barnes, Parliamentary Assistant to the Minister of Education.

The initiatives complement previous actions, including a revamped math curriculum introduced in 2020, which goes back to the basics, de-streaming of Grade 9 math and science, the restoration of merit-based hiring of educators, and a one-of-a-kind, publicly funded tutoring program designed to empower students with proven learning strategies and techniques.

Ontario’s plan to boost math, writing, and reading skills is a step towards ensuring that students have the necessary skills and knowledge to succeed in the workforce. Over the years, the Ontario government has faced a lot of criticism for not investing enough in education as its students have had a high rate of failure in many subjects, and in 2021 the Education Quality and Accountability Office (EQAO) found the majority of grade sixers failed the province’s standardized math test. The Additional investment is a start in the right direction, but only time will tell how the results are calculated.

Ingrid Jones
Ingrid Jones
Part-Time writer, must have coffee at least two times a day. I love my privacy, hiking and watching mystery movies.