The TDSB has a number of unique programs and strategies to identify disadvantage and intervene as early as possible to enable all students to attain high levels of achievement.
Helping students reach their full potential is the cornerstone of our mission and in 2011-2012 EQAO achievement results showed a 4% increase from 2010-2011 in Grade 9 Applied Math scores that have been the focus of a strategy to address the achievement gap in mathematics. With the introduction of the Applied Math Strategy students showed a significant improvement and confidence in applied mathematics across the TDSB.
During the 2011-2012 school year, the TDSB successfully re-engaged more that 70% of the 1667 students who left school early by reaching out and making direct contact to develop personal plans to work towards graduating from high school. Of the total number of students contacted, more than 900 were successfully re-engaged and have returned to school.
A total of 47 Secondary schools participated in the School Support Initiative that focuses on Grade 9 and 10 credit accumulation. Instructional coaches have been working with school staff to identify gaps in learning of students in courses that have high failure rates. By mid-year, data showed that instructional strategies resulted in increased student achievement and a decrease in failure rates.
Arts programming and education is a vibrant part of our school communities. Hundreds of students competed in the TDSB Fusion and the Dare to Dance competitions in 2011-2012.
In support of 21st century learning, our Five-Year Building Plan is investing in new classroom technology and equipment, including $7.5 million over five years to upgrade science labs and nearly $800,000 for wireless technology in our schools.
We celebrated many incredible staff throughout the year, seven TDSB principals were recognized by the Learning Partnership's Canada's Outstanding Principals and two TDSB teachers won the Prime Minister's and Premier's Award of Teaching Excellence.
Learning professionals with our Special Education Department helped more than 38,000 reach their personal best by providing the extra support they needed to succeed.