On March 31st 2011, Grade 10 students across the province will be writing the Ontario Secondary School Literacy Test (OSSLT). The test, developed by classroom teachers and administered by the EQAO (Education Quality and Accountability Office) is intended to assess to whether or not students have acquired the literacy (reading and writing) skills that they are expected to have learned by the end of Grade 9(as outlined in The Ontario Curriculum). According to the EQAO website (http://bit.ly/gN8KoI), the test results identify students who have demonstrated the required literacy skills, as well as those who need additional instruction and practice.
The successful completion of the test is a requirement for any student who is pursuing an Ontario Secondary School Diploma, which is granted by the Ontario Ministry of Education. Students who are not successful on their first attempt are provided a second opportunity to write the exam in the following year. Students who are unsuccessful at least once are eligible to take the Ontario Secondary School Literacy Course (OSSLC) to focus on the development of literacy skills, and fulfil the graduation requirement (*principals can use discretion to allow a student to enrol in the OSSLC before he or she has had a second opportunity to take the OSSLT).
Although the test does not require students to prepare or study, students who are concerned about their potential success could benefit from writing practice exams and focusing on literacy skills. Students can access sample tests (sample booklets for session 1 and 2) and familiarize themselves with the structure and content of the test using the Getting Ready Guide available on the EQAO website (www.eqao.com).
Stay tuned for more OSSLT preparation tips!