Effective Date: September 2, 2008
Amended: September 2, 2008
Responsibility: Superintendent of Program and Schools
1.1 The Near North District School Board is committed to providing Early Immersion programs through to Grade 12 in a fiscally responsible manner. These programs will be provided in an equitable way according to individual community needs and based on the criteria identified in #2.2.
2.0 Criteria To Initiate or Phase Out Programs
2.1 All decisions made with regard to French Immersion program initiation, augmentation, phase out, or relocation shall be made in consultation with the Director, Supervisory Officers, a French Immersion committee [see Section 4.1] and all other stakeholder groups.
2.2 The criteria for determining French Immersion program initiation, augmentation, phase out, or relocation shall include the following:
- Availability of sites where space is available and is projected to remain available.
- Accessibility of good traffic patterns to the site.
- Community support/demonstrated interest in enrolling determined by community survey results.
- Room or space to support the program.
- Program and/or accommodation costs.
- Location of elementary/secondary sites within short distances of each other.
- Equitable distribution of sites to meet regional and system needs.
- At the secondary school level, staffing, enrollment and program organization where sufficient courses can be offered in French.
- Other considerations when applicable such as outlined in School Accommodation Policy.
3.0 Program models
3.1 The Near North District School Board continues to offer Early French Immersion programs using the current models of dual track and Immersion centers.
3.2 Early French Immersion programs in the Near North District School Board will begin in Junior Kindergarten.
3.3 Early French Immersion programs at the elementary level shall include a minimum number of hours as identified in the Ministry of Education grant guidelines for French language.
“In a French Immersion program, French must be the language of instruction for a minimum of 50% of the total instructional time at every grade level of the program. Immersion programs must provide a minimum of 3800 hours of instruction in French by the end of Grade 8.” French as a Second Language Document, p.4
At the Secondary level program hours for French Immersion programs shall follow the Ministry Guideline. “Schools may grant a certificate in French Immersion if the student has successfully completed the sequence of four courses in French Immersion and a minimum of six courses in other subjects taught in French”. French as a Second Language Document, p.3
The Near North District School Board sets the following guideline as the accepted standard:
JK/SK - 270 min per day / 90% of the program; 4.5 hr per day; 855 hrs/year SK; 427.5 hrs/year JK
Gr. 1 & 2 - 270 min per day/ 90% of the program; 4.5 hr per day; 855 hrs/year
Gr. 3 & 4 - 225 min per day/ 75% of the program; 3.75 hr per day; 712.5 hrs/year
Gr. 5 & 6 - 150 per day/ 50% of the program; 2.5 hr per day; 475 hrs/year
Gr. 7 & 8 - 150 min per day/ 50% of the program; 2.5 hr per day; 475 hrs /year
Secondary - Minimum of 4 French Immersion Courses and 6 other courses taught in French
At the JK, SK, and Grade 1 levels, 30 minutes a day will be devoted to oral language and literacy development in English.
At the Grade 2 level, 30 minutes a day will be devoted to the study of Social Studies in English.
At the Grade 3 and 4 levels, 75 minutes a day of English will be devoted to English Language Arts, and Social Studies.
At the Grade 5 and 6 levels, 150 minutes per day of English will be devoted to English Language Arts, Social Studies, Mathematics, and Music.
At the Intermediate level, 150 minutes of English Language instruction time will be devoted to English Language Arts, Mathematics, Science, and Music.
4.0 Best Practice
4.1 When required, a French Immersion Committee will be established to provide advice to the Senior Administration regarding the French Immersion program and accommodation issues. The French Immersion Committee shall consist of the following:
(1) Supervisory Officer responsible for French Immersion
(1) Elementary Principal/Vice-Principal of a French Immersion school
(1) Secondary Principal/Vice-Principal of a French Immersion school
(1) French Immersion elementary teacher from each division (Primary, Junior and Intermediate)
(1) Program Coordinator
4.2 The Near North District School Board supports the enhancement of resources and technologies in French Immersion programs.
4.3 The Near North District School Board supports on-going French Immersion teacher professional development in student language acquisition, teaching methodology, and curriculum.
4.4 The Near North District School Board supports the development of a French language culture in all French Immersion schools.
5.0 Needs of Students
5.1 Students requiring special education assistance shall receive support through the special education program.
5.2 Students with French competencies wishing to enter French Immersion at a time other than junior or senior kindergarten must consult with the school administration.
6.0 District Marketing Strategies
6.1 There will be an annual marketing campaign to attract students to our Immersion programs. The Information Officer for our Board along with the Superintendent responsible for French will take a lead in this campaign.