Committees at Work
Standards of Practice and Education Committee
The Ethical Standards for the Teaching Profession, the Standards of Practice for the Teaching Profession and the Professional Learning Framework for the Teaching Profession together convey a collective vision of teacher professionalism in Ontario. This collective vision is the foundation of initial teacher education, continuing teacher education, professional practice and educational leadership.
The standards describe the professional knowledge, skills and values inherent within Ontario's teaching profession.
The Standards of Practice and Education (SP&E) Committee advises College Council on the development, implementation and review of the ethical and practice standards and the professional learning framework that help to support teacher professionalism. The committee also reviews all Additional Qualification (AQ) policy guidelines.
In 2015, the committee focused on:
- enforcement of the standards within teacher education and professional practice
- communication and education regarding the standards
- development of standards-based teacher education research and resources
- development and implementation of policies related to AQ course guidelines
- development and implementation of policies related to the standards and teacher education
- educative teacher processes related to ethical leadership and practice as outlined in the ethical standards
- the review of the Professional Learning Framework for the Teaching Profession.
Teacher Education: Review of AQ Course Guidelines
In 2015, the committee reviewed 20 draft and 55 final AQ course guidelines. Over 2,000 members of the teaching profession and the public participated in these policy development processes.
AQ courses are offered by providers across Ontario. The content of these teacher education policy guidelines are developed collaboratively with members, educational partners and the public. The ethical standards and the standards of practice are the foundation for AQ course guidelines that help enhance teachers’ professional knowledge, skills and practices.
In 2015, AQ course guidelines were developed through consultations and collaborative writing sessions. Web-based technologies were employed to support member access and engagement in the policy development processes. Nine provincial writing teams were responsible for the development of 39 of the following policy guidelines in both English and French:
- Mathematics, Intermediate and Senior
- Classroom Management
- Safe and Accepting Schools
- Teaching LGBTQ Students
Schedule D (3-Part Specialist):
- Enseignement et Leadership en situation minoritaire
- Inclusive Classroom
- Teacher Leadership
Schedule E (Honour Specialist):
- Principal’s Qualification Program
In addition, the following 17 AQ course guidelines were developed through partnerships with provincial organizations:
- Business Studies — Accounting, Senior
- Business Studies — Entrepreneurship, Senior
- Business Studies — General, Intermediate and Senior
- Business Studies — Information and Communication Technology, Intermediate and Senior
- Economics, Senior
- History, Intermediate and Senior
- Health and Physical Education, Intermediate and Senior
Schedule D (3-Part Specialist):
- Business Studies — Accounting
Schedule E Honour Specialist:
- Business Studies
- Health and Physical Education
Find an AQ
Enhancements were made to the Find an AQ section of the College website in response to the direction of the SP&E Committee in its attempt to track relevant and valuable data regarding AQ accessibility, availability and inquiries. As a result, approximately 300 members submitted AQ inquiries to the College.
Report: Additional Teaching Qualifications: Supporting the Ongoing Education and Professional Practice of the Teaching Profession
To enhance policy development an AQ report was commissioned by the committee that provided historical and current statistical data, as well as an overview of the relevance, evolving needs and perceptions associated with continuing teacher education through regulated additional teaching qualifications. The report helped inform the committee's work related to ongoing professional learning and the enforcement of the standards.
Report: Standards of Practice and Education Committee — Highlights of Standards of Practice and Education Work from September 2012 to June 2015
To support the transition of new members of the SP&E Committee, a report was commissioned that outlined the initiatives and accomplishments of the previous SP&E Committee from September 2012 to June 2015.
This report has been used as an orientation resource for new council members and highlights key aspects of the following SP&E unit work:
- AQ policy development — research, development, validation and implementation
- Technological initiatives to support AQ policy development — Standards Information Management System (SIMS) and Issues Inquiries Management System (IIMS)
- Standards educative sessions
- Standards teacher education resources
- Ethical standards institutes and workshops
- Scholarship of teaching and learning
- Initial teacher education — standards-based research and practice
Teacher Education Seminars
To support the policy review of AQ course policy guidelines, the SP&E Committee engaged in a series of teacher education seminars with experts in the fields of:
- Teaching LGBTQ students
- First Nations education
- Early learning
Review of the Professional Learning Framework for the Teaching Profession (PLF)
The PLF supports the Ontario College of Teachers in providing ongoing education for members of the College. The document also serves to inform the public of the many ways teachers remain knowledgeable and current in their professional practice.
The PLF is a key dimension of self-regulation and its currency is essential for ensuring public trust.
In 2015, the SP&E Committee supported the commencement of the review of the document, which has been in existence for 16 years.
The consultation for the review of the PLF involved College members, education partners and the public. Over 100 members of the profession participated in an Open Space session, over 2,500 members engaged in an online survey, 35 members facilitated focus groups within their professional context, and 10 written submissions were received by education partners and members.
The SP&E Committee also participated in a focus group, and the Chair of the committee made two presentations to the College’s Public Interest Committee regarding the PLF.
AQ Policy Development Provincial Consultations:
- Teaching LGBTQ Students
A consultation entitled “Critically Exploring our Practices: LGBTQ Voice, Representation and Equity in Ontario Schools” was held with practitioners to support the development of the new Schedule C: Teaching LGBTQ Students Additional Qualification (AQ) Course Guideline. The session provided insightful and valuable perspectives that were shared with the provincial AQ writing team responsible for this guideline. Twenty-eight members of the profession participated.
Students were also consulted on the theme “LGBTQ: Exploring Safe, Inclusive and Equitable Spaces.” Forty-two students provided their insights to help inform the AQ guideline content for the Teaching LGBTQ Students course as identified within the Teachers’ Qualifications Regulation 176/10.
- Teacher Leadership
Background research and an environmental scan focusing on the experiences of teacher leaders were facilitated to develop the new Teacher Leadership AQ.
A consultation entitled “Exploring the Knowledge, Skills and Attitudes Related to Professional Leadership Practice” was held with practitioners to support the development of the new Schedule D: Teacher Leadership AQ Course Guideline. Thirty-two College members participated, providing rich information regarding a collective vision of teacher leadership within the province, which was shared with the provincial AQ writing team responsible for the guideline.
- Principal’s Qualification Program (PQP)
The College facilitated a one-day Open Space consultation on the theme “Exploring What it Means to be a Principal in Ontario” to support the review of the Principal’s Qualification Program (PQP), Fifty-one College members and stakeholders representing all jurisdictions, interests and regions in Ontario shared their insights to ensure that the revised PQP guideline accurately reflects the content needed to support principal qualifications in response to changing realities.
- Supervisory Officer’s Qualification Program (SOQP)
To support the review of the Supervisory Officer’s Qualification Program (SOQP), the College facilitated a one-day Open Space consultation on the theme “Exploring what it Means to be a Supervisory Officer in Ontario.” Thirty-three College members and stakeholders representing all jurisdictions, interests and regions in Ontario provided their perspectives to ensure that the revised SOQP guideline accurately reflects the content needed to support supervisory officer qualifications in response to changing realities.
Joint Summer Institute with College of Early Childhood Educators (CECE)
In July 2015, the College of Early Childhood Educators (CECE) and the Ontario College of Teachers (OCT) co-hosted a Summer Institute entitled “Revisiting Interprofessional Collaboration and Ethical Leadership in Early Learning”. A focus of the institute was to collaborate as two regulated professions to explore and support a shared understanding of ethical shared practices within Full-Day Early Learning — Kindergarten contexts.
As a result, a new resource, Exploring Interprofessional Collaboration and Ethical Leadership, is being used with teacher-educators to support the integration of the ethical standards within professional practice.
Professional Education for AQ Providers
Over 100 AQ course developers attended three AQ institutes entitled “Exploring an Inquiry Stance within AQ course Design — An Institute for AQ Course Developers,” which focused on holistic and inquiry-based adult learning processes. These experiential institutes offered AQ course developers the opportunity to explore AQ course guideline concepts and design through the lenses of universal design, differentiated instruction, professional inquiry and critical pedagogy.
Standards educative sessions, along with standards-based resources, continue to influence and support teacher education and leadership development. These sessions support the integration of the ethical standards and the standards of practice within teacher education.
In 2015, the College facilitated 42 standards-based sessions with 830 participants, including teacher candidates, new teachers, teacher-educators and leaders, principal candidates, AQ course developers and internationally educated teachers.
Ethical Leadership within Initial Teacher Education
The Ontario College of Teachers and Charles Sturt University engaged in a joint teacher education initiative to support the integration of the ethical standards within initial teacher education. Initial teacher education students and faculty from Charles Sturt University, who participated in this project, shared the impact it had on their ethical knowledge, awareness and pedagogical practice with the committee.
The project focused on the College’s object related to the enforcement of the ethical standards. A provincial ethical resource for initial teacher education is being developed from the written narratives and ethical dilemmas of the initial teacher education candidates and contains reflections from the faculty.
Standards Teacher Education Resources
The committee supported the ongoing development of written and visual standards-based resources for use within initial and continuing teacher education and professional practice.
The Chair of the SP&E Committee directed Council to the many research-based standards resources that have been developed to support the teaching profession.
A written resource was created, through reflection, inquiry and collaborative dialogue, to accompany the Knowledge Keepers visual narrative. Knowledge Keepers is a valuable standards-based First Nations resource for initial and continuing teacher education.
An educative resource entitled Exploring the Ethical Standards for the Teaching Profession through Anishinaabe Art was also created to support ethical conversations within teacher education through the use of artistic representations of the ethical standards. This resource may also help to support the meaningful inclusion of First Nations cultures and worldviews within initial and continuing teacher education.
Exploring Interprofessional Collaboration and Ethical Leadership is a written resource developed as a collaborative research project involving the Ontario College of Teachers and the College of Early Childhood Educators and will be used within initial and continuing teacher education. It’s designed to help bring the ethical standards and standards of practice for both professions to life. The resource has been shared with school boards, teacher education programs and educational partners. To date, both colleges have received considerable positive feedback as it appears to be a highly relevant resource for educators.
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