German educational delegation visit OISE to discuss Canada’s educational landscape

By Christina Andrews
May 3, 2023
Dean Erica Walker and Professor Normand Labrie with German delegation
Photo features Kathy Broad, Yiola Cleovoulou, Dr. Angela Pyle, Professor Normand Labrie, Professor Erica Walker, Ms. Petra Häffner, Ms. Theresa Schopper and Dr. David Montemurro. Christina Andrews/OISE

OISE leadership and researchers warmly welcomed a delegation of representatives from the Ministry and Parliamentary Committee on Education, Youth, and Sports in Baden-Württemberg, Germany.

As part of their study tour, the German delegation sought to hear diverse perspectives on various areas of inquiry with education leaders and researchers to delve into Ontario's education ecosystem.

The delegation was welcomed by Professor Erica N. Walker, Dean of OISE, and Dr. Normand Labrie, Interim Associate Dean, Programs – who spoke with the delegation in German.

“On behalf of all at OISE, I would like to extend a heartfelt welcome to our distinguished guests from the Ministry and Parliamentary Committee on Education, Youth and Sports in Baden-Württemberg, Germany,” said Walker. “I look forward to our conversations and sharing OISE’s expertise as we exchange perspectives on teacher training and education.

Dean Erica Walker with German delegation
German delegation representing the Ministry and Parliamentary Committee on Education, Youth and Sports from the State of Baden-Württemberg visited OISE to discuss Ontario’s education ecosystem. Christina Andrews/OISE

Ontario and Baden-Württemberg, one of the most industrialized states in Germany, have had a long-standing relationship since signing a Commercial Memorandum of Understanding in 1987. The partnership was further strengthened in 1990 when an inter-regional conference was hosted in Toronto, where the two jurisdictions entered into a multi-sector partnership agreement focusing on various areas. This partnership has been renewed several times since then.

Dr. Angela Pyle, interim director at the Dr. Eric Jackman Institute for Child Study, Dr. David Montemurro, Associate Professor in the Department of Curriculum, Teaching and Learning, Kathy Broad, Associate Professor, Teaching Stream and the Associate Chair for Teacher Education, and Yiola Cleovoulou, the program chair for the Master of Arts Child Study and Education Program all presented on teacher certification and shared program overview for Master of Arts in Child Studies and Master of Teaching programs at OISE.

Presentations explored an overview of curriculum for teacher training in Ontario – including prerequisites to access teaching programs – required practicums and placements, career opportunities for teachers within school boards, and inclusion of courses to support Indigenous and multicultural communities.

The objective for this high-profile delegation tour was two-fold: for everyone involved to gain a better understanding of the Canadian education system – with particular emphasis on OISE’s and Ontario's leadership role in this area. The second objective is to comprehend how multiculturalism and the immigrant experience are being integrated into the school system, both from the perspective of educators and learners.

The delegation has recognized that Germany, especially Baden-Württemberg, has experienced a multicultural transformation that has yet to be fully integrated into their education systems. Ontario, on the other hand, has ample experience in this area and OISE is seen as a potential model to learn from as Canada’s number one Faculty of Education.

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