About Us

TESL Ontario provides support and direction to professionals, government bodies and learners involved in English as a Second Language in Ontario.

TESL Ontario was established in 1972 as an independent not for profit association serving the professional development needs of English language educators in Ontario. The Association consists of a provincial office and 12 affiliate chapters and is governed by a nine-person board of directors.

TESL Ontario provides a certification system for educators working in the adult language training field and a recognition program for TESL training institutions in Ontario. The association is financially supported by membership fees, a portion of which it distributes to the affiliate chapters for local professional development activities.

TESL Ontario

TESL Ontario Vision Statement

To inspire professionals and learners through our role as a leading authority on English language education.

TESL Ontario

TESL Ontario Mission Statement

To provide support and direction to professionals, government bodies, and industry stakeholders involved in English language education.

The Role of Your Professional Association

TESL Ontario is a professional association supporting the needs of English Language educators. While a union focuses on relations with the employer, professional associations cater to the professional development and career development needs of its members.

As your professional association our primary focus is to:

  • maintain professional credibility through certification and professional designations, and
  • provide access to information, resources, professional development and a vast community of peers.


Image for description of TESL Ontario's three pillars of service


TESL Ontario offers a comprehensive range of services and programs designed to meet your professional and certification needs.

Description of Service professional standards


Description of Education, Resources and Community of Practice

While TESL Ontario actively promotes the value of the TESL education field to stakeholders, the association cannot intervene in individual employment scenarios such as, but not limited to, the employee/employer relationship, salary negotiations or disputes, or an employer’s internal policies and procedures.

Goals & Objectives
  1. To ensure excellence in the field of adult non-credit English language education through TESL Ontario Certification.
  2. To provide opportunities for professional development for all sectors of English language education.
  3. To promote and facilitate the development of resources and materials designed to support the needs of English language educators and their client groups.
  4. To provide career development support to professionals involved in the field of English language education.
  5. To provide opportunities for linking and collaboration with other English language education professional organizations, nationally and internationally through various venues such as publications and TESL Ontario digital media.
  6. To provide input, consultation and expertise to local, provincial and national government bodies to encourage policies that support the English language educational community of educators and learners.
  7. To operate in a fiscally responsible manner within standard accounting practices.
TESL Ontario Anti-Racism Statement

As an English language education organization, we recognize that institutional racism has profound negative impacts for racialized colleagues, learners and communities. As ambassadors to Canada, TESL Ontario professionals play a significant role in helping language learners gain the language skills required to thrive in their community. As such, we are committed to dismantling racism by instilling values such as equity, diversity, inclusion and multiculturalism in all facets of our profession.

TESL Ontario commits to continuously raising awareness about and confronting discriminatory behaviour and systemic racism.

TESL Ontario has committed to the following tangible actions:

  • Encourage more conversations through articles and blog posts that tackle specific issues experienced in marginalized communities.
  • Offer increased opportunities for professional development and support around the topics of race and discrimination, such as webinars, conference sessions, workshops, and collections of classroom teaching materials.
  • Support racialized and/or marginalized members of our organization by providing them with platforms (e.g. blog posts/webinars) to raise awareness for issues in their communities related to English language training.
  • Continue to provide a safe space for BIPOC members to participate in committees, boards, and other volunteer opportunities.
  • Condemn acts of systemic racism and discrimination in the field of English language education across our platforms.

We hold ourselves accountable to these commitments and the continuous learning involved in enacting them.

TESL Ontario Diversity Statement

At TESL Ontario, diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) are central to our organization’s identity and membership. Our commitment to these core values is and always will be unwavering, as they guide to represent all provincial stakeholders in English language education. Centering diversity ensures that our actions are encompassing of all of our members and help to inform equitable and inclusive decisions, projects and initiatives.