Education diplomas obtained in France finally recognized in Ontario

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Diplomas obtained in France related to teaching, education and training professions are recognized in the province. This advancement should allow newcomers with this diploma to apply directly for teaching positions on French-speaking and English-speaking school boards, without necessarily having to go through the obstacle course which is the qualification certificate issued by the Ontario College of Teachers. .

The Consul General of France in Toronto, Tudor Alexis, announced this “great breakthrough between Ontario and France in favor of bilingualism” through his Twitter account, in the context of the shortage of French-speaking professionals in Ontario.

More specifically, the Ontario government now recognizes French diplomas related to the MEEF (Teaching, Education and Training Professions) Master’s degree obtained at the 33 INSPE (National Higher Institute of Education and Education) in the province.

Tudor Alexis, Consul General of France in Toronto. Image credit: Soufiane Chakkouche

In practical terms, this translates into a “recognition of the French teacher training program that now allows all MEEF Master’s degree holders to teach in Ontario on both English and French school boards, and this automatically, without the need for any formalities. additional for these French diplomas “, explains the Consul General.

By “no further formalities will be required,” it probably refers to the lengthy procedure for issuing certification to teachers by the powerful Ontario College of Teachers (OCTE), the usual gateway to Ontario’s career.

End of the obstacle course

“To teach at a publicly funded school in Ontario, you must have a certificate of qualification issued by the OEEO,” we read on the Ontario Ministry of Education website. This procedure is similar to the procedure when the prospective professor is a graduate of an Ontario institution. On the other hand, the same does not happen when the candidate has a foreign diploma in general and a French diploma in particular.

Indeed, for several years now, French-speaking teachers of immigrant origin have been denouncing the slowness and complexity of the Order’s process of obtaining the precious sesame, without which they would not be able to practice their profession, even if they have years of experience. home country. Some even call this process a “struggle.”

In fact, holders of diplomas in French education, such as the IUFM (University Teacher Training Institutes) or CAPES (Certificate of Aptitude for Secondary Teaching) must have them recognized by the OEEO. which examines the records on a case-by-case basis. -basic case, a procedure that can take several months to result in requests for additional training or denials. However, according to the Consul General, this is ancient history, at least in terms of INSPE sealed diplomas.

The Ministry of Education qualifies it

A story of the past. Not so safe! Contacted about this by ONFR+, the Ministry of Education only talks about a pilot project that can be generalized if the initiative meets its expectations.

“This pilot project is currently limited to a specific faculty (INSPE) in France. As the project expands, more French teachers can participate in the pilot project or apply directly to the Ontario College of Teachers to work in Ontario. The ministry will supervise the participation over time “, explains the person in charge of communication of the ministry.

And to remind: “This pilot project of teacher recruitment is one of the initiatives of the Teacher Recruitment and Retention Strategy launched in June 2021 to help raise awareness of teaching pathways and support recruitment efforts. in French-speaking jurisdictions abroad. ”

Stephen Lecce, Minister of Education. ONFR + screenshot

Stephen Lecce, Ontario’s Minister of Education, prefers to focus on the agreement’s strategic plan. “To support our government’s innovative four-year plan to hire and retain the best French-language educators, our government is working with the French Embassy, ​​the federal government, the Ontario College of Teachers and the National Higher Institute of Education and Education in Aix Marseille, ”he explains.

Two-way cooperation

Either way, Mr. Alexis is confident. “This step puts France in a relationship of trust with Ontario. The fact that I was able to work together with the authorities to reach a win-win agreement in such a crucial area as the Francophonie of young Ontarises gives me great satisfaction, “he said, before emphasizing the importance of reciprocity. ‘this agreement.

He promises that, in turn, in the near future, France will host teachers from Ontario who will teach various subjects in English in French schools. “The terms of this reciprocity of exchanges must be specified soon,” he said.

According to our information, two teachers are already working in Ottawa and Toronto through this program. Two drops of water in an ocean when we learn that, according to a report released last January by the Working Group on Teacher Shortage in Ontario’s French-language education system, about 1,050 teachers each year for at least the next five years , so that the province can cover the need for French-speaking teaching staff in primary and secondary schools.

Requested by ONFR+, Ontario College of Teachers declined to comment on the news.

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