English Language Learning (ELL)

CIS encourages all students to develop to their full potential recognizing that children progress at different rates. Teachers provide differentiated programming and learning goals to meet students’ individual needs. 

Primary (Grades K-3)

Our admissions policy allows for students from Kindergarten to Grade 3 to enroll as beginning 
English language learners. In time and with classroom teacher support, primary students are able to develop a foundation of early English language acquisition and literacy.  

At the end of Grade 3, children are assessed to determine their English Language proficiency in Listening, Speaking, Reading and Writing according to the Ontario Ministry of Education Steps to English Proficiency (STEP) Framework. 


The purpose of this assessment is to determine that children have the required academic English language comprehension and skills to meet the demands of our rigorous Junior Division Program.

Children who do not meet the STEP 4 English proficiency requirement, are required to participate in our fee-based English as an Additional Language Learning (EAL) program beginning in Grade 4.

Junior/Intermediate (Grades 4-8)

Students applying for Grades 4-8,  whose English proficiency is assessed to be below grade level standard during their initial assessment, are required to enroll in the fee-based EAL Program. The Ontario Ministry of Education STEP to English Proficiency is used as our framework for assessment.

High School (Grades 9-12)

The CIS high school program is academic and rigorous. New applicants for Grades 9-11,  whose English proficiency is assessed below grade level, will not be admitted to CIS. 

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