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A personal take on teacher over-supply
I’ve tried for four years to get full-time permanent
work in Ontario and gave up (“Way too many
teachers,” December 2011). I now teach full-time
in New Zealand and it’s fantastic – I don’t think
I’ll be coming back anytime soon. I am sad to think
of all the good teachers that want to have a family
and start a future but really can’t afford to because
they can’t get solid work. I gave up everything
because I wanted to teach full-time. My friends still
don’t have permanent work and they’ve been looking
as long as I have. Taking additional qualifications
(at about $1,000 a course) doesn’t seem to work,
nor does taking French or music or even converting
to Catholicism! I have friends in P.E.I. who had to
move as well. I’d like to see a follow-up article on
other provinces, to learn whether this phenomenon
is nationwide or simply in Ontario.
18 / www.unverstyaffars.ca / December 2011
Oversupply doesn’t begin to describe
the labour-market mismatch
between newly minted teachers
and teaching jobs in Ontario
by Moira MacDonald
L’expression « offre excédentaire »
est loin d’être assez forte pour décrire
l’écart entre le nombre de nouveaux
enseignants et le nombre de postes à
pourvoir en Ontario
www.affaresunverstares.ca / décembre 2011/
Ms. Kearney is from London, Ontario and now teaches in Masterton, New Zealand.
Next year she will be teaching full-time in Auckland.
One solution – raise the standards
having graduated from a teaching program in
2007 and having moved to another province to
teach, I know the reality of this situation (“Way
too many teachers”).
I think now, as I did going through my teacher training, that universities should not allow
every person enrolled in the teaching program
The only way that a student could “fail”
appeared to be if they did something highly
inappropriate during their teaching practice
placements. Once you are accepted into the program, pay your fees and show up for class, you
will become a certified teacher.
There needs to be a further sorting out process
to reduce not only the number of new teachers
put out into the world, but also to remove those
people who really should not teach.
Ms. Eedy is an Ontario-certified teacher now living
in Quebec City.
A new model?
it may be the case that all universities in Ontario
follow a model in which undergraduate teaching
is embedded in a context with a heavy emphasis
on research and on postgraduate studies (“Time
to consider a new kind of university,” December
2011). However, in other provinces, there are
smaller “liberal arts” institutions whose primary
mission is to teach undergraduates. In these uni-
versities, there is certainly research being con-
ducted and there may be small graduate programs,
but most of a professor’s time is devoted to
undergraduates. That is, the professor gives the
classes, meets with the students personally and
also does most of the grading. So this may be a
“new type of university” for Ontario but there are
other places in Canada where it is alive and well.
Dr. McKelvie is a professor of psychology at Bishop’s University
in Sherbrooke, Quebec.