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Enhancing Equity Task Force Report and Recommendations

A full review of the recommendations of the Enhancing Equity Task Force will be conducted by TDSB senior staff.

Following a closer examination of the recommendations, the Director of Education will present proposed next steps to the Planning and Priorities Committee on January 31, 2018.

Community members will have the opportunity to share their thoughts as part of the committee process.

The work of the Task Force brought to the surface the systemic barriers that many students are facing in the TDSB and highlighting – in many cases reinforcing – what areas we need to focus on. The resulting recommendations, which were supported by extensive research and feedback, are proposed to help all students experience higher levels of achievement and success in school.

Thank you to everyone in our community who shared their voice and experiences to inform this important work. The Toronto District School Board is a leader in equity, but we know more can – and must – be done to support students, especially the most marginalized.

Equity is not about taking things away from students who are thriving, but rather enhancing supports for those who are falling behind.

Over the past year, more than 7,000 people shared their voices and while the issues and feedback varied, the overriding theme was consistent: students need access to opportunities to succeed.

Report and Recommendations  

Enhancing Equity Task Force Report and Recommendations, December 14, 2017 (PDF)

Enhancing Equity Task Force Report and Recommendations, December 14, 2017 (WORD)   

Covering Board Report from Director of Education (read first)
Report and Recommendations

Common Questions and Answers

Will recommendations include closing specialized schools such as schools for the Arts?

No. As we have previously communicated there will be no closure of specialized schools.

Will there be closure of specialized programs such as TOPS or International Baccalaureate?

No, these programs will continue. What is clear is that the TDSB needs to find ways to expand the opportunities that these schools and programs offer.

What are the next steps with these recommendations?

At the December 13 Board meeting, Trustees voted to have TDSB senior staff conduct a full review of the recommendations of the Enhancing Equity Task Force. Following a closer examination of the recommendations, the Director of Education will present high level, proposed next steps to the Planning and Priorities Committee on January 31, 2018. 

No final decisions will be made on January 31, 2018. Community members will have the opportunity to share their thoughts as part of the committee process. Please visit the TDSB website for updates on the process and how you can get involved.

Following approval of the high level next steps, more specific action plans will be created and community members will have additional opportunities to share their voice.

Special Education -- Learning Disabilities and Gifted Questions

Will programs continue?

Yes, Special Education programs will continue to be offered. The Enhancing Equity Task Force, specifically, recommends:

Review Special Education Learning programs with an emphasis on:

  • Placement and inclusion of students with special education learning needs;
  • Retaining congregated sites while exploring options to include Special Education at a home school;
  • Professional development for staff;
  • Providing a process and clear information for collaborative decision-making about student needs, as well as a process to appeal and revise decisions;
  • Identifying physical and attitudinal barriers;
  • Ensuring that all families, including those new to Canada and those whose first language is not English, can successfully navigate the Special Education system with confidence.

The report does not recommend phasing out or closing congregated Special Education sites or Special Education programs, which includes Gifted and Learning Disabilities (LD). Director Malloy confirmed that dismantling of congregated sites would not be included in staff recommendations. It is, however, important to review Special Education programs and services to assess the impact of these supports on students’ achievement and well-being.

Will congregated Gifted and LD programs continue?

Yes, congregated Gifted classrooms and congregated LD classrooms will continue in TDSB schools.

What happens when a student goes to an Identification, Placement and Review Committee (IPRC) for consideration of Giftedness?

An IPRC meeting will be held. Parents/guardians, the student’s teacher, school administrator and, if appropriate, the student, will be at the meeting. The IPRC will review all information and make a decision regarding exceptionality and placement.  As with all IPRCs, the committee will first consider how the needs of the student can be met in a regular class. The parent/guardian will be asked their preference regarding placement - regular class or congregated special education class. Choice will continue.

How are Gifted students in the regular classroom supported?

Gifted students in the regular classroom would have an Individual Education Plan (IEP) that would outline their unique learning needs and detail the enrichment program that would best support them.

Our Mission
To enable all students to reach high levels of achievement and well-being
and to acquire the knowledge, skills
and values they need to become responsible, contributing members of
a democratic and sustainable society.
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