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The schools we need: Recent education policy in Ontario and recommendations for moving forward

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Leithwood, Ken; Fullan, Michael & Watson, Nancy
Publication Date: 
19 Jan 2003

Available in print for order (see SOURCE) and online for download.

Excerpt from press release:

"The schools we need" is an audit of current education policy in Ontario with recommendations for moving forward and improving schools. The authors from the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education of U of T (OISE/UT) base their report on an analysis of public opinion polls, student achievement data, educational policy research and their own experience in school systems internationally and in Canada.

The authors recommend the government pay more attention to research evidence of what works and invest in initiatives known to have high impact, such as early childhood education, programs that support new teachers and increased professional development for school leaders. "We need coordinated educational policies that research shows have a positive impact on students and their learning," says Leithwood, associate dean of research at OISE/UT. "We must spend our scarce educational resources wisely."

Note that ECE is cited as a key recommendation:

- Significant investments should be made in early childhood programs, the expansion of junior kindergarten programs (especially for families who are otherwise unable to provide such opportunities), and full-day senior kindergarten. (pg. 18 of report)

- Policies aimed at increasing access to high quality child care and education in the early years. As we have already pointed out, such care and education is an excellent investment in terms of future outcomes for children and youth. (pg 23 of report)