FRENCH AS A SECOND LANGUAGE





QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS

FSL PROGRAM REVIEW RECOMMENDATIONS

As Canada’s largest and most diverse school district, the TDSB is committed to providing equitable access to learning opportunities so that all students can gain the foundational skills they will need to thrive, whatever future pathway they choose. We know that learning French can unlock critical future opportunities allowing our English-speaking students to study, work and live in all parts of Canada.

Learning a second language is an advantage for students and can contribute to academic success. A second language enhances overall skills in learning, expands career opportunities, promotes understanding among cultures, and creates multilingual world citizens. Students’ skills in the dominant language are often enhanced through the study of other languages.

Students in intensive French programs develop skills such as literacy, critical thinking, problem solving, communication, leadership, and global competencies readily, and furthermore, they transfer these same skills and practiced learning in a second language environment to other contexts and subject areas. The intensive French programs support the development of these skills through the explicit teaching of learning strategies as well as the use and application of these thinking skills as students function and learn in a second language environment.

At the June 2019 Board meeting, recommendations to change the Intensive French-as-a-Second Language programs in the TDSB were passed. These changes include the phasing out of the Grade 7 Entry Extended French program, a transition from Junior Extended French (Grade 4 Entry) to Middle French Immersion (Grade 4 Entry) as well as a shift in entry point for the Early French Immersion from Senior Kindergarten to Junior Kindergarten entry.Please find below a timeline of these changes as well as some frequently asked questions specific to each program change.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Program Timelines

Page 2

FAQs

Grade 7 Entry Extended French

Page 3

Grade 6 Intensive Extended French (Cosburn MS)

Page 4

Junior Extended French (Grade 4 Entry)

Page 5

Middle Immersion (Grade 4 Entry)

Page 6

Early French Immersion (JK Entry)

Page 7 - 8

Core French

Page 9

PROGRAM TIMELINES

PHASING OUT OF PROGRAMS

Program

Final Entry Class Begins

Final Cohort Graduates Elementary Panel

Junior Extended French (Gr. 4 Entry)

September 2020

June 2025

Extended French (Gr. 7 Entry)

September 2020

June 2022

Cosburn Intensive Extended (Gr. 6 Entry)

September 2020

June 2023

Note: French Immersion only in schools (elementary and secondary) by 2029.

CHANGE IN ENTRY POINT TO EARLY FRENCH IMMERSION

SK Early French Immersion

Final Entry at SK September 2022

JK Early French Immersion

First Entry at JK September 2022

Year of Birth

Application Year

Entry Grade

Entry Year

2015

2019

SK

2020

2016

2020

SK

2021

*2017

2021

SK

2022

*2018

2021

JK

2022

2019

2022

JK

2023

2020

2023

JK

2024

*NOTE: Students who are 4 years old and students who are 3 years old in November 2021 will be permitted to join French Immersion in September 2022 for a double cohort JK and SK entry class - ONE YEAR ONLY to prevent removing access to an entire cohort during the transition from SK to JK entry.

EXPANSION OF MIDDLE FRENCH IMMERSION PROGRAM

Program

First Entry Class Begins

Timeline

Middle Immersion (Gr. 4 Entry)

September 2021

Conversion from JEF to Middle Immersion Complete 2026

*NOTE:There will be NO gap in access to Grade 4 entry to intensive program. Students in Grade 3 in 2019 will apply to Junior Extended French for September 2020, and students in Grade 3 in 2020, will apply to Middle French Immersion for September 2021.

FAQ - Grade 7 Entry Extended French

As per recommendations approved at the June 19, 2019 Board meeting, the Grade 7 Entry Extended French program will phase out entirely. The last cohort to enter the Grade 7 Entry Extended French program will begin Grade 7 in September 2020, and will graduate from Grade 8 in June of 2022. There will be no further Grade 7 Entry Extended French programs thereafter.

PHASING OUT OF GRADE 7 ENTRY EXTENDED FRENCH

Program

Final Entry Class Begins

Final Cohort Graduates Elementary Panel

Final Cohort Graduates Secondary

Grade 7 Entry Extended French

September 2020

June 2022

June 2025

Q#1: My child is already in the Grade 7 Entry Extended French program. Will these changes affect him or her?

A: No, your child will not be affected by these changes.

Q#2: My child is currently in Grade 6 (2019) and I plan to apply to the Grade 7 Entry Extended French program for September 2020. Will these changes affect us?

A: No, your child will not be affected by these changes. Applications for this entry point will be accepted in January 2020 at one of the 14 Grade 7 Extended French program schools for those interested, in catchment, Grade 6 students wishing to enter the Grade 7 Entry Extended French program in Grade 7 of September 2020.

Q#3: How do I find out where the 14 Grade 7 Entry Extended French programs are located?

A: For a listing of the 14 schools that host the Grade 7 Entry Extended French Program, please click on the link below:

https://www.tdsb.on.ca/Elementary-School/School-Choices/French-Programs/Other-Programs

Q#4: My child is already in the Grade 7 Entry Extended French program. Will he or she be able to complete the Extended French program?

A: Yes, students who began the Grade 7 Entry Extended French program in September 2019 or prior will be able to complete the Extended French program through secondary school.

Q#5: My child is in Grade 5 or younger and we are considering the Grade 7 Entry Extended French program in the future. How will the changes affect us?

A: There will be no further entry classes to the Grade 7 Entry Extended French program for September 2021 and beyond. The program will phase out entirely.

FAQ - Grade 6 Intensive Extended French (Cosburn MS)

As per recommendations approved at the June 19, 2019 Board meeting, the Grade 6 Intensive Extended French program will phase out entirely. The last cohort to enter the program will begin Grade 6 in September 2020, and will graduate from Grade 8 in June of 2023. There will be no further Grade 6 Intensive Extended French program thereafter.

PHASING OUT OF GRADE 6 INTENSIVE EXTENDED FRENCH

Program

Final Entry Class Begins

Final Cohort Graduates Elementary Panel

Final Cohort Graduates Secondary

Grade 6 Entry Intensive Extended French

September 2020

June 2023

June 2026

Q#1: My child is already in the Grade 6 Intensive Extended French program. Will these changes affect him or her?

A: No, your child will not be affected by these changes.

Q#2: My child is in Grade 5 right now and I plan to apply to the Grade 6 Intensive Extended French program for September 2020. Will these changes affect us?

A: No, your child will not be affected by these changes. Applications will be accepted this January 2020 at Cosburn MS for interested, in catchment Grade 5 students wishing to enter the Grade 6 Intensive Extended French program in September 2020.

Q#3: How do I find out more information about the Grade 6 Intensive Extended French program at Cosburn MS?

A: For more information about the Grade 6 Intensive Extended Program at Cosburn MS, please click on the following link: https://schoolweb.tdsb.on.ca/cosburn/Intensive-Extended-French

Q#4: My child is already in the Grade 6 Intensive Extended French program, will he or she be able to complete the Extended French program?

A: Yes, students who began the Grade 6 Intensive Extended French program in September 2019 or prior will be able to complete the Extended French program through secondary school.

Q#5: My child is in Grade 4 or younger and we are considering the Grade 6 Intensive Extended French program in the future. How will the changes affect us?

A: There will be no further entry classes to the Grade 6 Intensive Extended French program for September 2021 and beyond. The program will phase out entirely.

FAQ - Grade 4 Junior Extended French

As per recommendations approved at the June 19, 2019 Board meeting, the Junior Extended French program will be changed to the Middle Immersion program beginning in September 2021. As the Middle Immersion program phases in, the Junior Extended French program will phase out.

Q#1: My child is already in the Junior Extended French program. Will these changes affect him or her?

A: No, your child will not be affected by these changes.

Q#2: My child is in Grade 3 right now and I plan to apply to the Junior Extended French program for September 2020. Will these changes affect us?

A: No, your child will not be affected by these changes. Applications will be accepted this January (2020) for interested Grade 3 students wishing to enter the Junior Extended French program in Grade 4 of September 2020.

Q#3: My child is in Grade 2 or younger and we are considering the Junior Extended French program in the future. How will the changes affect us?

A: Beginning in September 2021, the Grade 4 Entry program will be Middle French Immersion. The Middle French Immersion program will offer 100% instruction in French for Grades 4-5 and 75% instruction in French for Grades 6, 7 and 8. Students may continue the French Immersion program in secondary school and may complete the certificate of Bilingual Studies, French Immersion. Interested families may submit an online application to this program in January of the year the students are in Grade 3. The first applications to this program will be accepted for students in Grade 3 in January 2021 to begin Middle French Immersion in September 2021.

Q#4: My child is already in the Junior Extended French program. Will he or she be able to complete the Junior Extended French program?

A: Yes, students who began the Junior Extended French in September 2019 or prior will be able to complete the Junior Extended French through secondary school.

Q#5: My child is in Grade 3 right now and I plan to apply to the Junior Extended French program for September 2020. Will he or she be able to complete the Junior Extended French program?

A: Students who begin Junior Extended French in September 2020 will be able to complete Grade 8 in Extended French. There will be no new Grade 9 Extended French in September 2025. On a case by case basis, the secondary school principal will permit students who complete the Grade 8 Junior Extended French program in June of 2025 to enter the French Immersion program in Grade 9 in September 2025.

FAQ - Grade 4 Middle Immersion

Early intensity matters for students maintaining and building further language proficiency; there are higher proficiency rate when the onset is more intense in terms of exposure. The Grade 4 Middle Immersion Program will permit students to blend with the Early Immersion Program entry students at the onset of the secondary level to continue their studies. This may permit more secondary schools to offer a more fulsome menu of courses in French with a variety of depth and breadth to compulsory and elective courses.

Q#1: Where will the new Middle French Immersion sites be located?

A: To begin, the existing Junior Extended French program sites will transition to serve as the new Middle Immersion sites. Changes may occur in the future in accordance with board procedures.

Middle Immersion Model (Grade. 4 Entry Point)

Hours

Note: EDU requirements for French Immersion is 3800 hours.

Grade 4 (100%)

900

Grade 5 (100%)

900

Grade 6 (75%)

675

Grade 7 (75%)

675

Grade 8 (75%)

675

Total Number of Hours

3800 Hours

**In Middle Immersion, Grade 4-5, all subjects will be taught in French. Grade 6-8 all subject taught in French with the except of English Language, and Science.

Q#2: Why is Math in the Grade 4 Middle Immersion program taught in French?

A:As the Grade 4 Middle Immersion program is a second entry point to the only intensive French Language program in TDSB as of 2022, for consistency of programming and in order to meet the Ministry of Education requirements for French Immersion hours, the Math curriculum is taught in French. In addition, the following applies:

  • the specific mathematical vocabulary has many identical words between French and English -i.e., the words resemble one another a great deal in both languages
  • abstract concepts can be explained and represented with the support of symbols, drawings, concrete materials (manipulatives) which supports and enhances learning of both the concepts and the language
  • students can demonstrate their understanding of these concepts with the help of symbols, drawings and concrete materials which allows teachers to evaluate understanding of math concepts independently of productive language skills

FAQ - JK Early French Immersion

The entry point to Early French Immersion is currently Senior Kindergarten. As per recommendations approved at the June 19, 2019 Board meeting, the entry point will change to Junior Kindergarten for September 2022. There will be one transition year wherein students in Junior Kindergarten and Senior Kindergarten will be eligible to apply to the Early French Immersion program. From that year forward, students will enter Early French Immersion in Junior Kindergarten.

Q#1: What is Early French Immersion?

A: Early French Immersion programs are designed for students who do not speak French at home. The Early French Immersion program provides the maximum French language experience available in our schools. All class activities are conducted in French until the end of Grade 3 although some specialist subjects like Physical Education may be taught in English.English is introduced in Grade 4. After Grade 8, students continue the French Immersion program at designated secondary schools. Students who successfully complete a minimum of 10 credits in French at the secondary school level are eligible for a Certificate of Bilingual Studies in French.

Q#2: My child is currently in Junior Kindergarten. Will this change affect us?

A: No, the first cohort to enter Junior Kindergarten will be in September 2022. Interested families will have an opportunity to apply to this program online when their child is 3 years old in November 2021.

Q#3: My child is currently 3 years old (DOB 2016). Will this change affect us?

A: No, the first cohort to enter Junior Kindergarten will be in September 2022. Interested families will have an opportunity to apply to this program online when their child is 3 years old in November 2021.

Q#4: My child is currently 2 years old (DOB 2017).How will these changes affect us?

A:This cohort of children may apply to Early French Immersion in 2021 to begin in Junior Kindergarten in September of 2022. This cohort will include students born in 2018 as well resulting in a one-time Junior Kindergarten and Senior Kindergarten entry class.

Q#5: My child is currently 1 year old or younger (DOB 2018, 2019 and beyond).How will these changes affect us?

A: Children in this age group and beyond will apply the year the child is 3 years old.

Q#6: How will I apply to the program?

A: The application to the Early Immersion program will remain an online process. The year your child is 3 years old, please visit www.tdsb.on.ca/french for information on how to submit an application online.

FAQ - JK Early French Immersion, continued.

Early French Immersion Model (JK Entry Point)

Hours

Note: The EDU requirements for French Immersion is 3800 hours.

JK Entry (100%)

900

SK (100%)

900

Grade 1 (100%)

900

Grade 2 (100%)

900

Grade 3 (100%)

900

Grade 4-8 (50%)

450

Total Number of Hours

6750 Hours

**In Early French Immersion, Junior Kindergarten-3, all subjects will be taught in French (however, some specialist subjects may be taught in English i.e., a PREP coverage subject). Grade 4-8 becomes a half-day program with the following subjects taught in French - French Language, Math, Social Studies.

Q#7: How will I know if French Immersion is suitable for my child?

A: The Early French Immersion program is open to all students. There is no such thing as an “ideal candidate” for intensive French programs. Teachers in French-as-a-Second Language programs employ the same range of strategies to accommodate wide learning styles and learning needs as they would in the English program.

Q#8: What about childcare?

A: Information about childcare can be obtained at your local French Immersion school at the time of school registration.

Q#9: What about transportation?

A: Transportation is yet to be determined.

FAQ - CORE FRENCH

Q#1: What is Core French?

A: Core French is mandatory in Ontario schools from Grades 4 to 8 for all students in English-language elementary schools. Policy and program requirements for elementary school Core French programs dictate that students entering Grade 4 must receive French instruction in every year from Grade 4 to Grade 8, and must have accumulated a minimum of 600 hours of French instruction by the end of Grade 8. There is one mandatory Core French credit required in Gr. 9. Students may continue to study Core French through to the end of Grade 12.

Q#2: Are there changes to the Core French program?

A: There is no change to the current Core French program. As approved at the June 19, 2019 Board meeting, a Core French action plan will be presented at the fall board meeting that will serve to strengthen the existing Core French program.