French Immersion in Toronto Public Schools
As real estate agents who know a whole lot about schools, our clients ask us about French Immersion programs in Toronto quite frequently. Our clients feel that French Immersion schools provide “better education”, and this is based on EQAO stats through recent years. This is not without merit. In Oakville and York Region, where you can directly regionally-compare the EQAO pass-rates of French Immersion students vs. English-track students, we found a 17% difference in performance in 2014. Does that mean that FI students perform 17% better than English-track students? Not necessarily, as the program does indeed attract students from (generally) more-concerned parents. But the numbers are certainly intriguing.
Here is information about the French Immersion programs at public schools in Toronto…
- In Toronto, French Immersion starts in Senior Kindergarten. And until Grade 3, the children spend their entire school day learning all subjects in French and NONE learning in English. Beginning in Grade 4, English-learning is re-introduced gradually, and by Grade 6 the learning in each language is 50/50 (50% learning in English, 50% learning in French), until Grade 8. The program is then continued at select secondary schools.
- Getting into the French Immersion program at the Senior Kindergarten level in Toronto is automatic IF you apply by the deadline, but also if the school you are applying to is at capacity your child may have to attend another school until spots free up. If you apply PAST the deadline, you will have to be placed on a Wait List.
- For a fuller breakdown of the French Immersion program, please visit the Toronto District Board’s FI web-page HERE. Please note that there is a registration deadline for French Immersion (for September placement), and that date is usually in mid-December of the previous year.
- A list and ranking of the schools in Toronto that offer French Immersion programs is at the bottom of this page. (They have been ranked by 7-year EQAO scores only, as opposed to our regular rankings where Potency and Consistency also affect the rankings.)
Why such a demand for French Immersion? Perhaps a comment from “Willy999” on the cbc.ca forums puts it best… He wrote:
“Some of the demand for French Immersion comes from parents who view the program as a better learning environment for their children as opposed to a program that stresses French. The program is viewed as a “private school” within the public system. The demand for French Immersion could be reduced by offering these parents an alternative English based program.”
It is true that schools with French Immersion programs generally do better in the EQAO tests than schools without. Is this indicative of the level of education given, or is it just that they attract a “smarter” student? We believe it is more of the latter. However, we still recommend these French Immersion schools to our clients as most parents would prefer to have their children be influenced by peers who do well in school.
THERE IS SO MUCH TO KNOW about French Immersion in Toronto, including the crazy boundaries that may change from year to year! Be very careful when moving to Toronto that you know exactly where your child is going to be attending.
Here are Top Five the rankings for the 18 public elementary schools in Toronto (Midtown-Uptown), and the 26 public elementary schools in Toronto (Lower Toronto), that currently offer the French Immersion program:
BEST FRENCH IMMERSION SCHOOLS IN TORONTO (MIDTOWN-UPTOWN) 2020
BEST FRENCH IMMERSION SCHOOLS IN TORONTO (LOWER TORONTO) 2020
Here is a list of the public High Schools in Toronto that currently offer the French Immersion program:
- Lawrence Park Collegiate
- Malvern Collegiate
- Leaside SS
- Humberside Collegiate
- Harbord Collegiate
- York Mills Collegiate