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Ontario Grade 9 students won’t have to pick between academic, applied streaming by September 2022

Ontario will end Grade 9 academic and applied streaming in all courses by September 2022.

The province announced the decision in early July but released more details on Thursday.

The practice, which asks students to choose between pursuing academic or applied courses upon entering the secondary-school system, has drawn criticism at home and abroad for decades.

Critics argue streaming disproportionately funnels Black and other racialized students into applied streams, limiting their future prospects and entrenching inequity into the province’s education system.

Read more:
Ontario to end academic streaming in Grade 9, early years suspensions

“Our government has continuously taken action to remove barriers for all students, including racialized children in Ontario,” a spokesperson for education minister Stephen Lecce said Thursday.

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“We will continue to take action to lift up all students, with an ambitious plan to support better pathways to the skilled trades, post-secondary, and good-paying jobs.”

Ontario began the de-streaming process in September 2021 with a new math course for Grade 9s. On Thursday, provincial officials confirmed the process will now include the de-streaming of science, geography, English and French as a second language courses.

English, geography and French as a second language will now offer only the academic stream for Grade 9 students.

For the de-streamed science course, the class will focus on biology, chemistry, physics, earth and space and will also help students develop and refine their STEM skills.

Read more:
Ontario announces mandate to include Indigenous learning for Grades 1 to 3

Streaming is still in place for Grade 10, however, the province said on background it will be releasing details for the academic and applied math courses for the 2022-2023 school year that will help students with the transition from non-streamed courses to streamed ones.

Premier Doug Ford previously said scrapping streaming would bring Ontario’s education in line with the rest of the country while ending a discriminatory practice.

“We’re the only province in the entire country that does this, and it’s really not fair to certain groups of students,” Ford said at a news conference.

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The province recently announced another curriculum revision which will include students learning First Nations, Metis and Inuit education, as well as the history of the residential school system.

With files from The Canadian Press

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© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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