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International & Indigenous Languages (Elementary)

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The International & Indigenous Languages Program – Elementary helps students learn a new language or maintain and develop the language of their family heritage, promoting cultural and linguistic diversity. It is available to all students (JK-Grade 8), regardless of their language background and the school board they attend, and is FREE for Ontario residents. 

Classes will be offered in-person and/or virtually. If in-person classes must be cancelled, students will be asked to switch to virtual learning.

September 7, 2024 to June 14, 2025

Every Saturday: 9:30 am – 12:00 pm In-person and/or Virtual

Amharic, American Sign Language (ASL), Arabic, Blin, Bulgarian, Cantonese, Creole, Croatian, Dari, Dutch, Farsi, Igbo, Inuktitut, Italian, Kinyarwanda, Kirundi, Korean, Lingala, Mandarin (Simplified), Mandarin (Traditional), Pashto, Polish, Punjabi, Romanian, Russian, Slovak, Spanish, Swahili, Tigrinya, Turkish, Ukrainian, Yoruba

Every Saturday: 1:00 pm – 3:30 pm Beginner classes Virtual only

American Sign Language, Arabic, Korean, Mandarin, Spanish, and Ukrainian

Registration for the 2024 – 2025 school year is now OPEN.

Morning classes (9:30 am to 12:00 pm)

We offer the following languages Saturday morning.

Language Format Location for In-person
Amharic In-person St. George School, 130 Keyworth Ave., Ottawa
Arabic In-person St. Patrick HS, 2525 Alta Vista Dr., Ottawa
Blin In-person Notre Dame HS, 710 Broadview Ave., Ottawa
Bulgarian In-person St. George School, 130 Keyworth Ave., Ottawa
Cantonese In-person Notre Dame HS, 710 Broadview Ave., Ottawa
Creole Virtual N/A
Croatian In-Person Frank Ryan Catholic Int School, 128 Chesterton Dr., Ottawa
Dari Virtual N/A
Dutch In-person Notre Dame HS, 710 Broadview Ave., Ottawa
Farsi In-person – All Saints HS, 5115 Kanata Ave., Kanata
Igbo Virtual N/A
Inuktitut Virtual N/A
Italian In-person Frank Ryan Catholic Int School, 128 Chesterton Dr., Ottawa
Kinyarwanda Virtual N/A
Kirundi Virtual N/A
Korean In-person St. Mother Teresa HS, 440 Longfields Dr., Barrhaven
Kurdish In-person – St. Mother Teresa HS, 440 Longfields Dr., Barrhaven
– St. Matthew HS, 6550 Bilberry Dr., Orléans
Lingala Virtual N/A
Mandarin (Simplified) In-person and Virtual – All Saints HS, 5115 Kanata Ave., Kanata
– Notre Dame HS, 710 Broadview Ave., Ottawa
– St. Matthew HS, 6550 Bilberry Dr., Orléans
– St. Joseph HS, 3333 Greenbank Rd., Nepean
– St. Mother Teresa HS, 440 Longfields Dr., Barrhaven
Mandarin (Traditional) In-person and/or Virtual Notre Dame HS
710 Broadview Ave., Ottawa
Mandarin (Simplified) for
Non-Native Speakers/ Conversation class
In-person and Virtual – Holy Trinity HS, 180 Katimavik Rd., Kanata
– Notre Dame HS, 710 Broadview Ave., Ottawa
– St. Joseph High School, 3333 Greenbank Rd, Nepean
Polish In-person St. Nicholas Adult HS, 893 Admiral Ave., Ottawa
Portuguese In-person Frank Ryan Catholic Int School, 128 Chesterton Dr., Ottawa
Punjabi In-Person and/or Virtual – Holy Trinity HS, 180 Katimavik Rd., Kanata
– St. Mother Teresa HS, 440 Longfields Dr., Barrhaven
Romanian In-person Frank Ryan Catholic Int School, 128 Chesterton Dr., Ottawa
Russian
Russian for Beginners/Non-Native Speakers (Gr. 2 to Gr. 8)
In-person St. George School, 130 Keyworth Ave., Ottawa
Slovak In-Person St. George School, 130 Keyworth Ave., Ottawa
Spanish In-person and Virtual – Frank Ryan Catholic Int School, 128 Chesterton Dr., Ottawa
– Holy Trinity HS, 180 Katimavik Rd., Kanata
– St. Matthew HS, 6550 Bilberry Dr., Orléans
– St. Patrick HS, 2525 Alta Vista Dr., Ottawa
Swahili Virtual N/A
Tigrinya In-person – Frank Ryan Catholic Int School, 128 Chesterton Dr., Ottawa
Turkish In-Person Notre Dame HS, 710 Broadview Ave., Ottawa
Ukrainian In-Person Holy Trinity HS, 180 Katimavik Rd., Kanata
Yoruba In-Person or Virtual Frank Ryan Catholic Int School, 128 Chesterton Dr., Ottawa
Note: In-person location might change

Afternoon (1:00 pm – 3:30 pm) Beginner VIRTUAL classes

Afternoon Virtual classes are designed for beginners (Grades 2 – 8). Prior knowledge of the language is not expected or required.

  • American Sign Language
  • Arabic
  • Korean
  • Mandarin (Simplified)
  • Spanish

All afternoon classes are offered virtually.

The Ottawa Catholic School Board reserves the right to cancel any program due to low enrolment.

Eligibility and choices
  • Students who are in JK to Grade 8 in the 2024 – 2025 school year.
  • Students must be available for the full duration of the class time.
  • Students currently attending a school in Ontario and Quebec (please also see the section below “Required Documents”).
  • Students may register for one of the following choices:
    • one morning class (Grades JK – Grade 8)
    • one afternoon class (Grades 2 – Grade 8) (Note: Beginner students only)
    • one morning class and one afternoon class (Different languages am/pm)
Required documents

As per the Ontario Ministry of Education guidelines, the following supporting documents of NEW students to our program must be reviewed by the Continuing Education Department prior to confirmation of the registration. We will email parents on the details of this process on receipt of the registration.

Proof of Address (only one required):

  • Current Property Tax Bill
  • Current Utility Bill
  • Home Phone/Cable/Internet Bill
  • Please note, Driver’s License is not acceptable

Proof of Citizenship and Status in Canada (only one required):

  • Canadian Citizen (Birth Certificate, Passport, Baptismal Certificate)
  • Permanent Resident (Permanent Resident Card, Stage One Approval letter, Equivalent Documentation from
  • Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) confirming approval in principle)
  • Refugee Status: Documentation from IRCC confirming status, Consideration of eligibility (Convention refugee)
  • Diplomat Status / Minister’s Permit
  • Student Visa (Study Permit)

REGISTER for the 2024 – 2025 school year

Registrations received after August 23 will be processed and notification of the start date sent later.

Important Note! When you register, you will receive an email confirming that we have received your registration. After we add your child to a class, you will be receiving a Welcome email. Please don’t bring your child to school before receiving the Welcome email with your child’s start date.

In-person classes: A consumable fee of $15 per student will be collected.

Students from Quebec or International students residing in Ontario must pay a tuition fee of $170.00 (payable online). Note: In case of cancellation, you will receive a prorated refund minus an administrative fee of $15. 

Online payments can be made after June 24, 2024

Questions:  Call 613-228-3338.

Summer Programs

Interested in our Elementary Summer Programs?

Learn more

Please note…

The Ottawa Catholic School Board reserves the right to cancel any program due to lack of registration.

The Ottawa Catholic School Board (OCSB) has committed to enhancing its educational offerings by providing Indigenous language courses to students. It aligns with the Board’s dedication to The Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls To Action. The OCSB understands and respects the unique learning requirements of First Nations, Métis, and Inuit students. The Board acknowledges the importance of imparting the truth about Canadian history, including the legacy of residential schools, as outlined in Call to Action #62. Moreover, the Board recognizes the evolving dynamics between Indigenous and non-Indigenous communities across Canada.

In pursuit of its commitment to reconciliation, the OCSB has actively responded to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls to Action through various initiatives. However, the Board currently needs educators who are available to teach Indigenous language courses. If you know of individuals proficient in Indigenous languages interested in sharing their knowledge, please encourage them to contact The Continuing and Community Education Department. It’s important to note that Ontario College of Teachers certification is not a requirement for interested educators. Everyone is welcome to join the OCSB to foster cultural understanding and linguistic diversity within our educational community.