• OTCC Executive Committee

Email Templates for Our Email Campaign

Updated: Jan 3, 2020

We have been working to create a set of templates to make it easy for anyone to copy, paste and send off to the people who should be changing the MPT. Please join our campaign to stop wasting taxpayer money on a policy which has no roots in fact, data, logic, equitable assessment, or morality.



We at the OTCC are calling on all Ontarians to join our email campaign to affect change to the proposed Math Proficiency Test being rushed through to a January trial test. This test has thousands of teacher candidates around the province wondering what is going to happen.

Below are a set of email templates which will be sent to the Minister of Education, the Special Assistant to the Minister (Sam Oosterhoff), the Premier of Ontario, EQAO, and local MPPs. A list of these addresses, except for your local MPP, are listed below.


Please copy and paste the contents of the fields and email them out daily. This will only take 2 minutes. As increased pressure mounts, we have hope to effect change to the conditions of this test and its roll-out. Join us in stopping this arbitrary and punitive test.


Names and Email addresses


Stephan Lecce (Minister of Education)

stephen.lecce@pc.ola.org and Minister.EDU@ontario.ca


Lisa Thomson (Previous Minister of Education) lisa.thompsonco@pc.ola.org


Sam Oosterhoff (Special Assistant) sam.oosterhoff@pc.ola.org


Doug Ford (Premier of Ontario) doug.fordco@pc.ola.org


EQAO info@eqao.com


Local MPPs are listed in the link

https://www.ola.org/en/members/current

Template 1

Dear Sir or Madam,


Student teachers, their parents, university professors, and teachers from across Ontario have expressed concern over the newly mandated Math Proficiency test (MPT). I have a question which I would like an answer to as information about this test has been withheld for too long.

Why does the MPT fail to recognize that teacher candidates teach different ages and divisions within schools? Why is it not tailored to match our teaching levels or teachable subjects?

Some teachers will only be qualified to teach k-6 and it is unreasonable to ask them to pass an exam to grade 9, as they will not be qualified to teach beyond grade 6. In addition, teacher candidates who do not have math as a teachable subject will have received no formal training in math pedagogy, yet the province expects teacher candidates to know how to do this because it is on the exam. Also, teachers in the primary-junior and junior-intermediate will have no training in content or pedagogy beyond the grade 8 level. In order to teach math at the high school level, a teacher must have math as a ‘teachable’ subject. This means that they would have extensive post-secondary qualifications and courses in math. However, music, history, English or French teachers would not necessarily be well versed in math because it is not something that they would be qualified to teach, nor would they be required to take university level or even advanced high-school math courses to become excellent educators.

Again, why does the MPT fail to recognize that teacher candidates teach different ages and divisions within schools? There is only one version of the test. Why is it not tailored to match teaching levels or teachable subjects?

I am looking forward to a prompt and honest answer.


Sincerely,

YOUR NAME

Template 2


Dear Sir or Madam,


Student teachers, their parents, university professors, and teachers from across Ontario have expressed concern over the newly mandated Math Proficiency test (MPT). I have some questions which I would like answers to as information about this test has been withheld for too long.

The professional requirements for teacher education programs have changed midway through with absolutely no adjustments to the process to accommodate this. Why? Changing the professional qualifications in the middle of a training program is wrong. This information was not available when students applied, and may irreparably affect many people who will not pass the math test or those who won't be able to afford to keep retaking it.

Why weren’t accredited teacher education programs given time to update their curricula to provide their students with the materials required to prepare for this test? Faculties of Education around the province assured teacher candidates in their intake, that if they met the requirements of the program, they would graduate and become certified to teach in Ontario. Now, this has become untrue. Faculties of Education have not had the ability to prepare current candidates to be successful on this very rushed exam.

Why is the MPT date of effect March 31, 2020, a mere month before most people graduate? Why weren’t current students grandfathered in? It seems punitive and arbitrary to force students who have spent 6 years and paid tens of thousands of dollars for their education, to change how they achieve their goal within months of completing it. Changing the rules of the game in the middle of the second half is unfair.

I am looking forward to prompt and honest answers to these questions.


Sincerely,

YOUR NAME

Template 3

Dear Sir or Madam,


Student teachers, their parents, university professors, and teachers from across Ontario have expressed concern over the newly mandated Math Proficiency test (MPT). I have some questions which I would like answers to as information about this test has been withheld for too long.

Why is there no study material available for the test that has a pilot run in January? Are teacher candidates expected to memorize, regurgitate, and forget the material for this test?

These are processes which are actively discouraged in education, so please explain how this is supposed to make teacher candidates more effective math teachers.

The accelerated rollout of this test is purely political and even EQAO has publicly stated that the timeline to develop this test in an equitable manner should be considerably longer than the deadline set by the current government. Why is this government acting against the advice of the experts to the detriment of students and future teachers? Why does this test need to be rushed instead of carefully and equitably written? Would it not be better to have a test that is developed through an iterative process where potential issues can be solved prior to an official rollout? Why would you rush an important test like this which determines the careers of thousands of Ontarians?

I am looking forward to prompt and honest answers to these questions.


Sincerely,

YOUR NAME

Template 4


Dear Sir or Madam,


Student teachers, their parents, university professors, and teachers from across Ontario have expressed concern over the newly mandated Math Proficiency test (MPT). I have some questions which I would like answers to as information about this test has been withheld for too long.

Can you please explain how passing a math test containing content from grades 3-11 will make teacher candidates from the following areas more effective educators?

A kindergarten teacher

A high school music teacher

A grade 6 French teacher

A grade 12 history and geography teacher

Make sure to refer to the entire range of content on the test and its relevance to each hypothetical teacher.

Please cite your sources.

I am looking forward to prompt and honest answers to these questions.


Sincerely,

YOUR NAME

Template 5


Dear Sir or Madam,


Student teachers, their parents, university professors, and teachers from across Ontario have expressed concern over the newly mandated Math Proficiency test (MPT). I have some questions which I would like answers to as information about this test has been withheld for too long.

Can you please explain why your government is releasing a new math curriculum in September 2020, yet current teacher candidates will be tested on the old curriculum? Can you please clearly explain how this approach makes sense?

I am looking forward to prompt and honest answers to these questions.


Sincerely,

YOUR NAME

Template 6


Dear Sir or Madam,


Student teachers, their parents, university professors, and teachers from across Ontario have expressed concern over the newly mandated Math Proficiency test (MPT). I have some questions which I would like answers to as information about this test has been withheld for too long.

Why weren’t accredited teacher education programs given time to update their curricula to provide their students with the materials required to prepare for this test?

Why is there no study material available for the test that has a pilot run in January? Are teacher candidates expected to memorize, regurgitate, and retain everything they try frantically to teach themselves with no support over the next eight weeks? Many students will have to teach themselves content they have never seen before, while also maintaining good grades and practice-teaching in schools all over the province.

Grade 11 math has not always been a condition for achieving an Ontario Secondary School Diploma. Teacher education programs have many students who achieved the previous standard of grade 10 math. How is a test that includes grade 11 math equitable for all current students?

Conservative MPPs wrote several teacher candidates, and I quote:

“EQAO’s experience and expertise in developing large-scale assessments for students ensures that the teacher math proficiency test will be inclusive and accessible to all who take the test. The math proficiency test will also be available in English and French (sic) In addition, EQAO will develop online preparation and support materials, including practice tests that will be made available to help individuals taking the test.”

Please explain how this relates to the above information.

I am looking forward to prompt and honest answers to these questions.


Sincerely,

YOUR NAME

Template 7


Dear Sir or Madam,


Student teachers, their parents, university professors, and teachers from across Ontario have expressed concern over the newly mandated Math Proficiency test (MPT). I have some questions which I would like answers to as information about this test has been withheld for too long.

The Conservative government has vowed to provide teachers with the support they need to help improve current teachers' math skills; however, there is zero commitment to do the same for teacher candidates who have to take this test. Where is their support in all this?

The Conservative government has vowed to provide teachers with the support they need to help improve current teachers' math skills; however, considerable amounts of funding for additional qualifications courses for current teachers have been removed. These professional development courses are designed to make educators even more effective by developing a series of new skills and strategies and resources to add to their toolkit. How does removing access to subsidized professional development courses support and improve current teachers’ math skills?

I am looking forward to prompt and honest answers to these questions.


Sincerely,

YOUR NAME

Template 8


Dear Sir or Madam,


Student teachers, their parents, university professors, and teachers from across Ontario have expressed concern over the newly mandated Math Proficiency test (MPT). I have some questions which I would like answers to as information about this test has been withheld for too long.

Can you please explain why Cameron Montgomery now earns $140,000 to Chair the EQAO board, when the position previously paid $3,600? The math test is being outsourced and partnered with third-party companies. Please explain the relationship between the massive pay raise and the outsourcing of work.

The math test was not a factor when current year 2 students decided to apply to a teacher education program. They have invested two years and a minimum of $16,000 into their education in the teacher education program. This is not including the previous 4 years of university before the B. Ed. programs. The Conservative government has changed the rules of the game. How is this fair or equitable?

Consider the following hypothetical parallel. If Mr. Ford had been campaigning through late spring and spent his campaign donations, personal funds, time and energy into his bid to be the Premier of Ontario and then suddenly a law was passed that all elected officials must be fluent in French and pass an advanced French language proficiency exam, would that have been fair and equitable?

I am looking forward to prompt and honest answers to these questions.


Sincerely,

YOUR NAME

Template 9


Dear Sir or Madam,


Student teachers, their parents, university professors, and teachers from across Ontario have expressed concern over the newly mandated Math Proficiency test (MPT). I have some questions which I would like answers to as information about this test has been withheld for too long.

Students' EQAO math scores are allegedly dropping. There are several probable causes of this; it is likely is partially a result of the current math curriculum, not because existing teachers are doing a poor job. Another crucial and overlooked fact is that nearly one-third of students in Ontario speak English or French as a second language. The math content of the EQAO exams is embedded in language-based word-problems. This means that the content is not accessible to many students. Of course, as the EQAO test content is embedded in language, the math portion is not only assessing math ability and comprehension, it is assessing language. The EQAO test puts many students in a situation which they find strange; teachers encourage collaboration and sharing of strategies in the classroom. Students often learn better when they construct meaning in a social context. Mr. Vygotsky would certainly agree, yet the EQAO is done in a silent, lonely vacuum where students are forbidden using manipulatives, or talking through their strategies or even using resources they may be used to using. Finally, students who are absent, have trouble with tests or have special needs dramatically affect the results and provincial average scores of this test. Please explain how punishing pre-service teachers will support and improve existing teachers. Also, explain how the other factors are being addressed by the Ontario Government.

Instituting a math test for teacher accreditation will not result in increased scores. In fact, studies have shown that there is no correlation between teacher testing and student performance.

I am looking forward to prompt and honest answers to these questions.


Sincerely,

YOUR NAME

Template 10


Dear Sir or Madam,


Student teachers, their parents, university professors, and teachers from across Ontario have expressed concern over the newly mandated Math Proficiency test (MPT). I have some questions which I would like answers to as information about this test has been withheld for too long.

Instituting a math test for teacher accreditation, especially one which is not equitably rolled out, will not result in improved EQAO scores. In fact, studies have been inconclusive and varied at best when investigating the correlation between teacher testing and student performance. Please show clear and conclusive evidence to show the need for such testing. Please cite your sources and make sure that they are recent (published within the last 5 years).

I am looking forward to prompt and honest answers to these questions.


Sincerely,

YOUR NAME

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