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Update on the Ontario Education Research and Evaluation Strategy Carol Campbell, Chief Research Officer/ Director, Education Research and Evaluation Strategy Branch. Four ways that evidence can play a critical role:
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Carol Campbell, Chief Research Officer/
Director, Education Research and Evaluation Strategy Branch
Understanding gaps in performance between currently higher and lower achieving students
Identifying and supporting strategies and practices that contribute to successful outcomes
Challenging negative assumptions and raising expectations
Integrating research, policy and practice concerns to strengthen application and communication of evidenceSymposium 2009:Closing Gaps in Student Achievement
Going deeper and wider on literacy and numeracy
Continuing innovation in secondary schools
Reduced gaps in student achievement
Reducing the gaps in achievement for those groups of students who, for whatever reason, need extra help
Increased confidence in publicly funded education
Fostering greater two-way engagement with the public to inform the implementation of the mandate to foster public confidence
Strengthening the role of schools as the heart of communities
Recognizing the pivotal role of schools in developing the workforce and citizens of tomorrowReach Every Student: Energizing Ontario Education
Our goal is to foster social cohesion through a publicly funded education system that respects diversity and brings all students together to learn through a shared set of experiences.
Our goal is to reach every student, regardless of his or her personal circumstances.*
*from Reach Every Student: Energizing Ontario EducationWhat is ‘closing the gaps’ ?
(Fullan, 2007: 44-45)
ELL= English Language Learners
The average ratio of boys to girls is approximately 2:1
Data Source: Information Management Branch, Ministry of Education
Council of Ontario Directors of Education (CODE) Projects – The CODE evidence-based projects focussed on piloting and implementing many of the recommendations of Education for All K-6, including differentiated instruction, assistive technology, professional learning communities and literacy/numeracy instruction. http://www.ontariodirectors.ca/pages/CODE_Chronicles/index.html
Ontario Psychological Association (OPA) Student Assessment Project – The OPA project collected key results and promising sustainable practices from every school board’s individual project designed to reduce wait times for student assessment (Kindergarten to Grade 4) and improve the quality and usability of assessment data. http://www.psych.on.ca/?id1=117
Web Based Teaching Tool (WBTT) – The WBTT is designed to screen young learners for remedial/instructional supplements to their normal education, and data from the previous year indicates a strong link between WBTT use and the activation of supports for students who are struggling.
Dispute Resolution – The resource guide Shared Solutions was developed following Ministry research into dispute resolution with stakeholder input, and an evaluation of the Dispute Resolution Pilots with the recommendations of the Provincial Advisory Committee will be used to inform future policy direction.
Broader Assessment Measures
Children’s Mental Health and Addictions
Based on international research
Features 13 strategies for improving boys’ literacy skills
Ministry funded teacher inquiry projects across the province to explore strategies for improving boys’ literacy skills and report results.
Final report to be published spring 2009
Sequel to Me Read? No Way! based on inquiry projects to be published – Me Read? And How!
Key findings include:
Reading materials that interest and engage boys are essential
Talk and oral language are powerful
Direct and targeted instruction is important
It is important to listen to boys and provide them with choice
Boys respond well to lots of tactile and active learning experiences
Male role models can strongly influence boys’ attitudes to literacy activitiesBoys’ Literacy
Completed English Language Learners Benchmarks study
Current Validation study of Steps To English Proficiency (STEP) underway
Developed evidence-based resources for use in field
Ongoing analysis of EQAO data to extract general trends and decide next steps
Initial planning for research on ELLs with Special Education needsEnglish Language Learners (ELL)
Two main programs:
ALF Program: reversing the effects of assimilation
PDF Program: integrating recent immigrants
Sources of information:
OnSis (ALF and PDF enrolments, country of birth)
EQAO (test results for ALF-PDF students)
StatCan (socio-demographic profiles of school communities, language spoken,immigration)
Research: University of Ottawa study: impact of implementation of ALF programs in school
This project will result in the development of urban Aboriginal education models for engagement with First Nation, Métis and Inuit students, families and/or communities that could be applied in different urban settings based on varying geographical and demographic circumstances.
These models will be developed as a result of in-depth inter-jurisdictional research and pilot projects carried out in three urban boards – Toronto DSB, Lakehead DSB and Simcoe DSB.
The first phase of the Project included a literature review and research focused on: retention; transitions; achievement; community/family outreach and engagement; challenges related to issues of high mobility; academic models; student support services
Each Pilot site has also commissioned research specific to the needs of their individual communities.Urban Aboriginal Education Pilot Project
The Ontario Ministry of Education is committed to developing and implementing policies, programs, and practices that are evidence-based, research-informed, and connected to provincial education goals.
The Ministry of Education is focusing its research activities on supporting its priority education goals:
Increased student achievement
Reduced gaps in student achievement
Increased public confidence in publicly funded education
A shared strategy designed to be inclusive of staff from across all parts of the ministry and to foster collaboration with partners across the education and researchcommunities.Ontario Ministry of Education Research and Evaluation Strategy
Establishment of an Education Research and Evaluation Strategy Branch (July 2008) within the Corporate Management and Services Division of the Ministry of Education.
Branch incorporates all previous Research Strategy functions, plus a corporate role to strengthen the co-ordination and application of research, evaluation and data for evidence-based decision making.
Move to Research and Evaluation Strategy
Ministry Research Co-ordination Team
Research Strategy and Chief Research Officer functions and activities
Ontario Education Research Panel as research leaders and championsLeading the Ministry’s Research Strategy
Alignment within Ministry to strengthen application and co-ordination of research and evaluation in process.
Analysis of existing Ministry research and evaluation projects to identify linkage to priorities, reduce duplication, increase strategic application, and examine areas requiring further attention.
Currently approx. 50 research and evaluation projects active.
Development of Ministry Research and Evaluation Forward Plan in process. Aim to put in place from 2009-10 financial year onwards.
Major projects recently completed or nearing completion to be reported widely.Applying Research to Inform Policy, Program and Practice
8 new members appointed to the Ontario Education Research Panel.Co-chairs for 2009-10: Doris McWhorter and Joan Green.
Research Strategy Speaker Series launched to profile academic speakers on priority topics to present to Ministry staff.
Further development of regional, provincial, national and international research networks, e.g. regional research symposia held across majority of Ontario regions in 2008.
Enhancements to Annual Symposium based on feedback from 2008 SymposiumNetworking and Partnerships
Ministry presentations and papers at research conferences, including joint presentations with researchers and educators
Participation in international benchmarking and exchanges
Involvement in pan-Canadian discussions about research and data agendas across provincial governments
Contributions to speaking engagements, workshops, seminars, conferences and events
Research, evaluation and data input to Ministry documents and reportsContributing to Research Knowledge