Transformation of Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting

Every child in Ontario should have the opportunity to succeed — regardless of background, identity or personal circumstances. Student achievement, well-being and equity must be closely interwoven in day-to-day teaching, learning and assessment in a way that enables all students to flourish.

Current research and ongoing engagement with education partners, including students, parents and educators, have provided insight into the transferable skills required to succeed today and tomorrow. At the heart of our work, we are committed to providing all students with access to inclusive, engaging and motivating learning experiences and the opportunity to become resilient, and compassionate global citizens.

Our renewed vision for education, “Achieving Excellence: A Renewed Vision for Education in Ontario” along with the release of the Education Equity Action Plan and our commitment to student and staff well-being provide a strong foundation to support development of these skills and help to ensure each child reaches their full potential.

As part of this process, the Ministry of Education is working towards modernizing Ontario's curriculum and engaging in an in-depth review of our province's student assessment and reporting practices. This work is being conducted through the Independent Review of Assessment and Reporting and the recent creation of the Transformation Steering Committee.

Our schools are the foundation for a caring and competitive Ontario. Student achievement in the fullest sense remains a top priority for the Ontario government and our students need to be equipped to reach their full potential for the opportunities of technology-enabled classrooms and a changing global economy.

More information on the work can be found below and we look forward to continued engagement as we build upon these important stepping stones.

More about the Independent Review of Assessment and Reporting

Initiating Transformation

Ontario has a history of innovation built on strong partnerships in education. We know that changes informed by diverse perspectives are more likely to be responsive, successful and sustainable.

In the fall of 2017, the Ministry of Education announced the creation of the Transformation Steering Committee (TSC) to secure input and advice to inform and strengthen the education system over the next three to five years.

Transformation Steering Committee – Membership and Guiding Principles

The Transformation Steering Committee is co-facilitated by Marilies Rettig and Ken Thurston and includes a broad representation of individuals and organizations including students, parents, educators, school and system leaders, Indigenous partners and business.

The Transformation Steering Committee is founded on our commitment to collaborative work with partners from the entire education sector – from ministry staff to school and system leaders, from parents and students to local business organizations. This means developing a consistent understanding and a shared approach on how we can achieve a common vision  together.

The Transformation Steering Committee will establish guiding principles for transformative change in the following areas:

  • Curriculum refresh,
  • A renewed approach to Grade 9,
  • Assessment practices aligned with the refreshed curriculum,
  • Reporting on student progress to students, parents and the public, including new report cards, and
  • Enhanced parent and community connections to school.

The committee will also provide the scope and key elements of implementation, as well as provide ongoing central oversight and feedback on the process.

Framing the Discussion

The approach of the Transformation Steering Committee models the principles of collaborative professionalism. These principles value all voices, foster a trusting environment, engender respect for all and allow open sharing of ideas to achieve a common vision. They also have a focus on research, evidence and best practices. The Transformation Steering Committee is committed to respect for the Education Act, other relevant Acts, regulations and agreements and respects and promotes the distinct missions of Ontario's four publicly funded school systems.

The Transformation Steering Committee is engaged in considering the competencies and knowledge that will best equip students for continued learning and success in life and work beyond school.

On April 30, 2018, on behalf of TSC the co-facilitators provided the Minister and Premier with an overview of the nature of the working relationship within the TSC, details of progress to date including preliminary outreach, and areas of consensus and recommendations on the following:

Review of Assessment and Reporting

Complementing the work of the TSC is the Independent Review of Assessment and Reporting conducted by the six education advisors, led by Dr. Carol Campbell. The focus of the review is to ensure that student assessment and reporting practices are culturally relevant and able to meet a wider range of learning and better reflect equity and student well-being. The report and advice provided by the review will inform and support the next three to five years of the TSC mandate.

Next Steps for Transformation and Broader Engagement

The TSC will continue to engage with stakeholders to inform next steps. Public and community engagement are planned for fall 2018.

Kindergarten Communication of Learning

Another step towards modernizing reporting practices began in the fall of 2017 with the introduction of new provincial reports in Kindergarten. For the 2017-18 school year, all parents of children in Kindergarten received the following reports:

  • Fall – Initial Observations Report
  • Winter and Spring – Communication of Learning

These three reports were introduced to help parents better understand their child's progress during the course of the school year. They were designed to ensure that parents of all children attending publicly funded elementary schools in Ontario receive clear, detailed, and straightforward information about the child's learning and growth in learning in relation to the overall expectations in The Kindergarten Program. At the end of each reporting period, educators communicate information about the child's learning in three categories: Key Learning, Growth in Learning, and Next Steps in Learning.

These provincial reports in Kindergarten are part of Ontario's updated policy on the assessment, evaluation and reporting of children's learning in Kindergarten, found in Growing Success – The Kindergarten Addendum 2016.

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