ESL and English Literacy Development (ELD)
The OCSB offers English as a Second Language (ESL) and English Literacy Development (ELD) programs to support students who are English language learners at the secondary level. English language learners are students whose first language is one other than English, or a variety of English that is significantly different from the one used for instruction in Ontario’s schools, and are students who may require focused educational supports to assist them in attaining proficiency in English.
Our ESL program is intended for English language learners who have age-appropriate first language literacy skills and educational backgrounds. Our ELD program supports English language learners who, due to various factors, have had limited opportunities to develop age-appropriate language, literacy and numeracy skills in their first language. Students taking ELD courses receive support for both language acquisition and academic upgrading.
ESL and ELD credit courses
At the secondary level, five centres offer language learning programs to students who are English language learners. ESL credit courses (ESLAO to ESLEO) are available to students on the ESL credit pathway at the following sites: Holy Trinity Catholic, Lester B. Pearson Catholic, St. Mother Teresa, St. Patrick’s and St. Pius X High Schools. ELD credit courses (ELDAO to ELDEO) are available to students on the ELD credit pathway at the following sites: Lester B. Pearson Catholic and St. Pius X High School.
Up to three ESL or ELD courses can be applied to the four compulsory English credits required for diploma purposes. These courses are designed to support students as they develop cognitive academic language proficiency in various content areas. These courses are credit bearing for diploma purposes.
Factors affecting second language acquisition
There are many factors which influence second-language acquisition including level of first-language literacy; previous educational experience and exposure to English; language(s) spoken at home; stage of acculturation; possible effects of trauma; length of time in Canada; possible presence of learning exceptionalities (both giftedness or learning disabilities); and past educational experiences. All of these factors are of equal importance.