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info@oct.ca

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Background for 2005 State of the Teaching Profession in Ontario Survey

September 05 2005

About the Survey

The College's quarterly magazine Professionally Speaking/Pour parler profession commissioned this, the College's third annual survey of members. Survey results appear in the magazine's September 2005 issue.

COMPAS, Inc., a public opinion and customer research firm, conducted the survey by telephone during a two-week period at the end of July.

Respondents

Respondents are representative of the 198,203 members of the College.

elementary teachers 53%
secondary teachers 23%
occasional teacher 9%
principal/vice principal 5%
other (retired, on leave,
not currently employed, etc.)

9%

faculty of education staff or faculty, supervisory officers and directors of education

1%

Survey Methodology

COMPAS interviewed 1,000 members of the College, randomly selected by computer.

Results are considered accurate to within 3.1 percentage points 19 times out of 20

The questionnaire consisted of a mix of open-ended and forced-choice questions. A precursor study of 100 College members asked exploratory open-ended questions on some of the topics to design the forced-choice questions.


Responses

On class size:

  • 32 per cent said that large class size is the biggest problem confronting Ontario schools today
  • 91 per cent said that smaller classes would do the most to improve student learning
  • 24 per cent said that their class size was larger last year compared to the previous year
  • 49 per cent said that there was no change to their class size last year

On provincial government initiatives:

  • 71 per cent said that multi-year collective agreements will bring peace and stability to the sector
  • 73 per cent strongly opposed using Minister's permits to allow uncertified individuals to teach
  • 71 per cent said that standardized testing is least likely to promote student learning
  • 31 per cent perceived the provincial government as education friendly.

On government effectiveness regarding:

  • teacher salaries - 50 per cent said they were very effective
  • teacher supply - 37 per cent said they were moderately effective
  • curriculum, technology or materials - 37 per cent said they were moderately effective.

On teachers' career goals:

  • 75 per cent rated interest in developing their teaching practice as very high
  • 72 per cent rated interest in mentoring new teachers as very high
  • 64 per cent rated becoming a vice-principal or principal very low
  • 58 per cent rated their interest in using their teaching skills outside a school environment as very high.

On what principals think:

  • 28 per cent thought that the biggest problem facing schools today was a lack of support for at-risk, immigrant and special needs students
  • 21 per cent thought that the initiative most likely to promote student learning was more teacher development.

Why is the College doing this?

  • To accurately gauge the opinion of College members on education issues.
  • To bring issues to the attention of the entire membership, the provincial government, other education stakeholders and the public.
  • To stimulate further discussion within the education system.
  • To encourage and explore common approaches among education's stakeholders to address concerns and strengthen the teaching profession.

About the College

The Ontario College of Teachers licenses, governs and regulates the profession of teaching in the public interest. It sets standards of practice and ethical standards, conducts disciplinary hearings and accredits teacher education programs affecting its 198,000 members in publicly funded schools and institutions across Ontario.

The College is the largest self-regulatory body in Canada.

101 Bloor Street West, Toronto ON, M5S 0A1, P: 416.961.8800 / Toll Free (Ontario Only): 1.888.534.2222 / F: 416.961.8822 / info@oct.ca

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