Towards Equitable Schooling for Black Canadian Students: Workshops for Educational Workers, Teachers and Parents

Investigator:

Funding Program:

Ontario Ministry of Education

Funding Amount:

$25,000

The goals of the project are:

  • to address the learning needs and promote the educational performance of students for whom the variety of English normally spoken in Ontario represents a second dialect by engaging related issues with parents and teachers of this student demographic in three schools;
  • to promote a welcoming school environment for caregivers (mostly – but not all - parents) of English-speaking students of Caribbean descent by eliciting community input and addressing conditions that parents perceive to impact their children’s academic engagement and overall well-being within Ontario schools;
  • to create an inclusive framework for nurturing minority parents’ ongoing relationships with their children’s schools, with a view to their active participation and advocacy engagement in their children’s public schooling; and
  • to generate implications for public education policy with regard to students who are often overlooked in studies of minority experiences in and immigrants' adaptation to Canadian schooling.

The project includes a series of ten after-school workshops that will familiarize parents and professional educators affiliated with participating schools with the research on standard versus nonstandard languages/dialects, raise awareness of how language variation issues impact students at the elementary, middle, and secondary school levels, stimulate reflection and discussion on educational challenges faced by bi-dialectal students, their parents and families and cultivate advocacy strategies to support the academic attainment and overall well-being of this student demographic.