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Dr. William Water and Urban Education

Three initiatives to change the face of urban education


Thanks to Dr. William Waters' generous support, these initiatives are possible: 

Scholarship | Teacher-in-Residence | Symposium

William Waters Scholarships in Urban Education

Through this annual scholarship, OISE offers students financial support to promote excellence in teaching in the urban classroom. Each scholarship winner is an experienced teacher working in an urban classroom, who is registered in a full-time Master’s program.

Melanie Willson, the 2011 William Waters Scholarship recipient, recognized immediately the significant impact the scholarship would have on her work in the school system.

“Schools don’t operate in isolation from social, political, and economic dynamics of the world outside," said Willson. "As a teacher working in an urban school in Toronto, I know that I’ll be able to offer my students so much more if I am committed to learning about those dynamics and advocating for more equitable practices and policies both inside and outside the classroom."

William Waters Teacher-in-Residence in Urban Education

The William Waters Teacher-in-Residence in Urban Education is a two-year secondment to teach in OISE’s Initial Teacher Education program, focused on teaching and learning in classrooms and schools in urban contexts.

Vanessa Russell (PhD) was a William Waters Teacher-in-Residence in Urban Education. For two years, she was the Curriculum Leader at an alternative school and taught a social justice course through the arts for some of the most underserved youth across the TDSB. She has worked as a teacher educator at both York and OISE and the focus of her doctoral work was ethical questions related to teacher-student pedagogical relationships.

She has held a number of leadership positions in the Equity Department of the TDSB and has been the teacher/coordinator of Canada's only dedicated secondary classroom for LGBTQ students.

Student support is a key fundraising priority at OISE, and there are many ways you can contribute. Find out how.