Province Unveils Government’s Vision for ‘Education that Works for You’ with 'Back-to-Basics' Math Curriculum, Renewed Focus on Skilled Trades and Cellphone Ban in the Classroom

Published on March 15, 2019

MISSISSAUGA, ON — Students and parents in Ontario can look forward to stronger math, STEM, and financial literacy curricula, a provincewide ban on cellphones in the classroom and improved skilled trades opportunities, as part of the Government of Ontario's new vision for ‘Education that Works for You.’

"The previous government left us an outdated system that did not prepare our students for the realities of today," said Nina Tangri, MPP for Mississauga-Streetsville. “We are going to be investing in education and students in a way that is focused on student achievement and well-being, ensuring that they are prepared to build good lives, families and careers right here in Ontario."

The government's plan, Education that Works for You, will protect a sustainable world-class education system for the students of today and the future and modernize the province’s classrooms and curriculum.

The province will ensure students are leaving school with the skills they need to build good lives, families and careers right here in Ontario while ensuring our education system is both fiscally sustainable and respectful of parents.

"Shortly after we came to office we did what the previous government had been afraid to do - and threw the doors open to real, meaningful public and parental input into our education system," said Thompson. "We heard from more than 72,000 parents, teachers, students, employers and organizations making this the largest consultation of its kind in Ontario history. The people told us what wasn't working and what we need to protect."

The new vision will modernize Ontario's classrooms and provide students with more learning opportunities to prepare them for success in post-secondary education, apprenticeship and training, and the workforce.

The plan would include:

  • Modernizing classrooms by expanding broadband, developing a new policy that will ban the use of cellphones during class except for educational purposes and modernizing the approach to assessment and evaluation with a renewed focus on equity across the province.
  • Introducing changes to education funding that keep resources focused on students in the classroom.
  • Supporting teacher mobility and bringing greater transparency, fairness, consistency and accountability to school board hiring practices of teachers.
  • Maintaining class sizes for Kindergarten to Grade 3, establishing a consistent approach to class sizes for grades 4 to 8 and aligning secondary class sizes more closely with other Canadian jurisdictions, while introducing a new approach to e-learning and reducing pressure on school boards to put students in portables and split classes.

We are also undertaking curriculum reform that will include: 

  • A new math curriculum that will focus on math fundamentals for all grades;
  • A renewed focus on STEM, skilled trades and financial literacy; and
  • A modern and age-appropriate Health and Physical Education curriculum that will keep students safe.

"Moving away from Discovery Math, and back to the fundamentals, will help prepare our students for the jobs of tomorrow, especially in the Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) fields," said Rudy Cuzzetto, MPP for Mississauga-Lakeshore.

“As a father of three elementary school-aged children and a school-bound child, I am happy to see that our government is driven in ensuring that our education system is back on its track. These new changes will help students finally get the skills they need to prosper in the real world. This plan works for the future of education and the people,” said Kaleed Rasheed, MPP for Mississauga East-Cooksville.

There will be clear provisions for parents who wish to exempt their child or children from sexual health education and online modules will be available for parents who want to discuss sexual health topics at home whenever they feel their child is ready.

The government is committed to discussing the key elements of the proposed plan, including hiring practices and class sizes, through a consultation process that allows partners to provide the benefit of their expertise, experience and ideas.

“Our Government has been clear from the beginning that we are listening to parents and consulting with our education partners to modernize and improve Ontario’s education system from kindergarten to Grade 12," said MPP Tangri. “We welcome conversation with any stakeholder who wants to work with us in good faith to ensure our plan always puts students first and remains fair to our educators.”

Ontario's Government for the People held the largest public consultation on education in the province's history. The consultation included more than 72,000 engagements across three different consultation channels, which included an open submission form, online survey and telephone town halls held in every region of the province.

The Government is committed to improving the education system and preserving teachers’ jobs.” said Sheref Sabawy, MPP for Mississauga- Erin Mills “We will continue to work with all school boards, trustees and teachers to improve our education system.”


·         Education that Works for You - Modernizing Classrooms


·         Education that Works for You - Modernizing Learning


·         Education that Works for You - Modernizing Health and Physical Education




Media Contact: Kosta Zoes, Legislative Assistant

[email protected]

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