Ontario high schools to offer ASL, LSQ classes this fall

 

Students in Ontario will soon be able to learn American Sign Language (ASL) to fill their language credit.

According to a news release from the Province, Ontario will become one of the first jurisdictions in the country to offer post-secondary students second-language courses in ASL and Langue des signes quebecoise (LSQ).

As of September 2021, secondary schools will be permitted to offer students the option to take ASL and LSQ courses as a second language.

“By expanding second-language course options for students, our Government is cementing its role as a leader in providing innovative learning opportunities,” Stephen Lecce, Minister of Education, said in a news release.

“By offering students the chance to learn ASL or LSQ, they can expand their language skills while developing a greater understanding of Ontario’s ASL and LSQ culture," he continued.

Additionally, in order to ensure linguistic accuracy, as well as to include authentic ASL and LSQ stories, the Province will be consulting ASL and LSQ communities regarding course content.

“This new curriculum is much needed and will be a rich addition for students across the province. It will enhance students’ understanding of the language and identity of ASL people in Ontario: ASL peoples’ sense of self, of membership, of culture, and of humanity and encourages students to develop respect for human diversity," Donald Prong, executive director of the Ontario Association of the Deaf, said in a news release.

"We want to recognize that the Ministry of Education’s commitment to developing this curriculum is a step in the right direction. We were very pleased to have been asked to participate in its development and we look forward to future opportunities of working together," he continued.

Cover photo courtesy of Kristin Snodden via Twitter

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