Provincial and Demonstration Schools Branch
Executive Director Message
Welcome to the Provincial and Demonstration Schools Branch (PDSB) website. We encourage you to browse our website to learn more about the programs and services we provide to support students and their families as well as district school boards across the province. In partnership with students, their families, district school boards and communities across Ontario, we are committed to supporting students who are Deaf, hard of hearing, blind, low vision, Deafblind or who have a severe learning disability, to develop to their full potential and succeed in school and beyond. The provincial and demonstration schools provide high quality educational services and placements that are based on evidence and best practices. We have a range of services we provide to support students and staff in district school boards in addition to the services we provide to students in a placement in one of our programs. As centres of excellence, we are committed to supporting every student to reach their full potential.
The Ministry of Education is responsible for PDSB and the direct operation of the four provincial schools and three demonstration schools at four different sites across Ontario (Belleville, Brantford, London and Milton).
Provincial and demonstration schools offer the Ontario curriculum at the elementary and secondary levels as well as individualized education with appropriate resources, giving exceptional children the opportunity to fully participate in the total school experience including sports, music, recreational and leadership opportunities. The schools operate on a school year calendar. Each campus includes services such as a full cafeteria, recreational and health services, and student lodging facilities.
The Provincial Schools for the Deaf, Ernest C. Drury, Robarts and Sir James Whitney, provide instruction for students from Kindergarten to Grade 12. The schools provide bilingual-biliteracy-bicultural school and student lodging programs which facilitate students’ language acquisition, learning, and social development through American Sign Language (ASL) and English.
The Provincial School for the Blind, W. Ross Macdonald, provides specialized placement programs for students from Kindergarten to Grade 12 who are blind, low vision and Deafblind. Programming includes a strong focus on the Expanded Core Curriculum in an inclusive, accessible environment. Programs vary in duration, to suit the needs of the individual student.
The demonstration schools, Amethyst, Sagonaska and Trillium, provide a one-year placement program for students diagnosed with a severe learning disability and resource support and consultation services for English district school boards to build capacity in teaching students with learning disabilities. The demonstration school placement is a high intensity reading and writing intervention program where students are provided the classroom support needed to foster their success. All students are taught using the Empower reading program developed by the Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids). Intervention programs in mathematics are also provided in the elementary and secondary panels based on student needs.
The student lodging program provides a structured and organized setting that encourages students to take responsibility for their environment and the daily school program is supported through structured homework periods as well as learning and social skills training and supports.
The Resource Services Program provides services for preschool aged children who are Deaf, hard of hearing, blind, low vision and/or Deafblind and their families. Teacher professional development and consultation services are also provided to English district school boards for students who are Deaf, hard of hearing, blind, low vision, Deafblind. PDSB also administers Play and Learning Centres in Belleville, London and Milton at each of the schools for the Deaf. These centres are designed to provide language, mathematics and literacy rich learning opportunities for infants, toddlers and pre-school children who are Deaf or hard of hearing and their families.
Another source of pride for the provincial and demonstration schools is the Alternate Educational Resources of Ontario (AERO) initiative. Through AERO, we develop and provide learning materials and media in accessible formats in both English and French for elementary, secondary, and postsecondary pupils with perceptual disabilities. AERO also converts inaccessible written textbook material into a variety of mediums that include braille, digital audio and/or navigable and accessible digital text. Where applicable, AERO will also produce larger print for students who require an enlarged copy of a textbook.
Each school year holds the promise of future growth within a positive and supportive learning environment that shows appreciation and respect for the culture and history of our schools and programs. We embrace the abilities of our students and staff to contribute to a collective responsibility for success focused on student achievement and well-being. Contact numbers and more detailed information about all the provincial and demonstration schools can be found on our website.
Provincial and Demonstration Schools Branch
Recent Job Postings
On-Call/Supply Opportunities Are you interested in the education of students who are deafblind? Consider bringing your professional expertise to the Provincial and Demonstration Schools Branch. Currently there is an exciting career opportunity available on an as required basis at our W. Ross Macdonald School in Brantford, which serve students who are deafblind in a student […]
On-Call/Supply Opportunities Are you interested in the education of students who are blind and/or low-vision? Consider bringing your professional expertise to the Provincial and Demonstration Schools Branch. Currently there is an exciting career opportunity available on an as required basis at our W. Ross Macdonald School for the Blind in Brantford, which serve students who […]
Ernest C. Drury School for the Deaf, Elementary program One – Three Year Term Appointment Position available September 1, 2022 to August 31, 2025 (Contracts rated under the Provincial Schools Authority) RESTRICTED The Provincial Schools Authority, Ernest C. Drury School for the Deaf, Elementary Program in Milton, Ontario, has an exciting opportunity available for an […]
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