No Mandatory Math Test for New Ontario Teachers

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New teachers in Ontario will have to pass a math test with a score of at least 70% effective March 31, 2020, in order to be able to teach in Ontario. The test will assess candidates' knowledge of grades 3 to 11 math and a third of it will address how to teach math. 

The implementation of this test and its timing are detrimental to teacher candidates  across the province. At the time of our application to school, high school math was not a prerequisite for the program, nor was there an established minimum of success in that course for admission to a teacher education program.

In addition, teachers college candidates who do not have math as a teachable subject will receive no formal training in math pedagogy, yet the province expects us to know how to do this because it's on the exam.

Changing the professional qualifications in the middle of a training program is wrong. This information was not available to us when we applied and may irreparably affect many people who will not pass the math test or those who won't be able to afford to keep retaking it. That's two years and many thousands of dollars people won't get back. 

If this math test goes through, there's nothing stopping the provincial government from making more changes to the profession that could drive out more teachers. Remember, it's nearly impossible to succeed in this province or even in this country without an education. Teachers' jobs and contributions are paramount.

Sign this petition and force the government to manage the curriculum itself instead of blaming teachers for doing what the Ministry mandates. There's no reason a kindergarten teacher needs grade 11 math to teach children who are just starting school, just like there's no need for French teachers to understand calculus to teach French. There's already a shortage of French teachers; creating more barriers to staffing is hardly effective.

Students' EQAO math scores are dropping; this is a direct result of the math curriculum, not because existing teachers are doing a poor job. The provincial government needs to go to the root of the problem, not just blame its teachers. Instituting a math test for teacher accreditation will not magically result in increased scores; only an effective curriculum can do that.