May 2017

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Date: May 4th, 2017

Memorandum to: Directors of Education
Student Success Leaders

From: Patrick Keyes
Director (A)
Student Achievement Division

Subject: 2017-18 Gap Closing in Literacy Grades 7-12 Education Program Other (EPO)

For the 2017-18 school year, district school boards continue to have the opportunity to apply for additional Education Program Other (EPO) funding to increase the achievement and engagement of students in Grades 7-12 who require additional support with literacy. We are grateful for how educators have approached this work to date and look forward to continued collaborations.

Student Success – Gap Closing in Literacy Grades 7-12 funds will support educators working in collaborative teams to assess and address the literacy learning needs of one or more of the following groups:

  • students in Grade 10 who require additional support to prepare for the Ontario Secondary School Literacy Test (OSSLT)
  • students who were unsuccessful on the OSSLT and have not yet met the literacy graduation requirement, and/or
  • students in Grades 7, 8 and 9 who require additional support in literacy.

The purpose of this funding, as outlined in the Board Funding Memo sent from Deputy Minister Bruce Rodrigues (April 12th, 2017), is to enhance capacity building for effective and differentiated instruction to meet the assessed needs of students who require additional support in literacy. The selected group of students will receive precise literacy support in response to their assessed needs. District school boards and the ministry will work together to increase the coherence and efficiency of the supports and professional learning opportunities connected to the inquiries. District school boards are expected to make a contribution from other funding (e.g., Learning Opportunities Grant (LOG) funding) amounting to approximately 25% of the total project cost.

How to Apply:

To apply for this funding, district school boards can submit an application by May 31st, 2017, using this survey link.

Applicants are encouraged to build upon the work that was undertaken for this initiative in 2016-17. Applications should detail the following:

  • a description of the targeted group of schools, students and/or educators
  • a rationale (supported by data/evidence) for selecting the targeted groups
  • the intended impact of the supports on instructional practice, student learning and achievement
  • an outline of the professional learning planned to increase the capacity of educators to precisely assess and respond to student literacy strengths and needs
  • a monitoring plan to measure the impact on educator practice, student learning and achievement
  • a cost estimate for the project, including the amount of EPO funding requested from the Ministry, and the amount the board will dedicate to the work from the Student Success component of the board’s Learning Opportunities Grant, and
  • an indication of how the Provincial Literacy Lead for the region will be involved in supporting the project.

District school boards that apply will commit to completing the expenditure and program-related reporting requirements.

Information Sessions:

District school boards requiring further information or guidance on the application process are invited to participate in a voluntary and virtual information session on:

  • Wednesday May 17th, 2017 from 10:00 am – 11:00 am


  • Thursday May 18th, 2017 form 10:00 am – 11:00 am


To register for a virtual session, or for further questions, please contact Karen Greenham, Education Officer, at or 416-325-4711.

Thank you for your continued commitment to the achievement and engagement of our students in literacy, and particularly for those who require additional support to achieve success.


Original signed by

Patrick Keyes

Director (A)
Student Achievement Division

C: Cathy Montreuil, Assistant Deputy Minister, Student Achievement Division (SAD)
Sandra Bickford, Director, Student Achievement Division (SAD)
Shirley Kendrick, Director, Curriculum and Assessment Policy Branch (CAPB)
Louise Sirisko, Director, Special Education Policy and Programs Brach (SEPPB)
Stephen Kelly, Manager (A), Student Achievement Division (SAD)
Christine Gardner, Manager, Curriculum and Learning Resources Policy (CLRP)
Regional Student Success Leaders (RSSLs)
Regional Office Leads