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June 20, 2018

Dear Members,

Thank you very much to all who attended our AGM on Saturday June 9, 2018 both in person and via Zoom. During our meeting we moved to accept the new Board. We are very appreciative to all of those who stepped up to fill most of the roles. Because there was only one person who was nominated for each of the positions, there was no requirement for an online vote.  We are pleased to announce the 2018-2019 TESL Canada Board (see below) and we look forward to our first board meeting at the beginning of July. We are especially grateful that we have national representation. Please keep in mind that TESL Canada has several committees and that you may wish to be a community member on these committees. If so, please let us know. We wish you a wonderful summer and we will be in contact later in the season with more TESL Canada news.  Best, Paula

Executive Officers

President: Paula Kristmanson (New Brunswick)

Vice President: currently vacant (TBD)

Past-President: Judy Sillito (Alberta)

Treasurer: Tony Caldwell (Nova Scotia)

Secretary:  Caroline Payant (Quebec)

Elected Committee Chairs

Professional Development: Yalda Ahmadvand (British Columbia)

Standards Chair: Dmitri Priven (Ontario)

Settlement Language National Network (SLNN):  Elsie Johnson (Alberta)

TESL Canada Journal: (Journal Editors- Farahnez Faez and Antonella Valeo)

Research and Outreach: Celia Logan (Alberta)

Member at Large: Scott Poole (Manitoba)

TESL Saskatchewan:  Liliana Dominguez

TESL New Brunswick: Kathy Whynot

TESL Nova Scotia:  Darlene MacInnis

TESL Newfoundland/Labrador Dr. Xuemei Li

Annual Report of the Acting President of TESL Canada, Paula Kristmanson 

AGM- June 9, 2018- Fredericton, NB
(in person or by zoom)

June 13, 2018


At the 2017 TESL Canada conference and AGM in Niagara Falls, Ontario, I was voted in as the new Vice-President of TESL Canada. The conference was a wonderful experience in terms of the quality of presentations and the chance to network and collaborate with colleagues from across the country. Sadly, the conference was not as well attended as was hoped and did not receive anticipated revenues. Moving into the summer, the Head Office worked diligently to try to keep the organization moving forward, but financial challenges were flagged. We reduced the hours of the executive director and made other cuts, but the Board finally had to make the difficult decision to close the Head Office.


Throughout the early fall, the Board met regularly to problem solve and discuss how to best serve the organization and its members. We began conversations with stakeholders and other related organizations to determine how we could keep the federation viable.  Unfortunately, during this time we had to temporarily suspend services until we could determine a workable process. In mid-fall, our President had to step down for personal reasons and I was then in the position of Acting President from the end of October.

My first goal as Acting President was to communicate and be transparent with members and others interested in the well-being of TESL Canada. I made this my primary focus for the month of November. Also, I relied heavily on the board members for support and collaboration and am forever grateful that they stayed the course and contributed regularly (in addition to board meetings) to the ongoing work of restabilising the organization. I want to not only acknowledge the support of the board, but the support of my colleagues at TESL NB who stepped up to help with the website, communications, and other pressing matters. I particularly want to recognize Craig Whynot who gives his volunteer hours to update our website, to Donna Hoffman who volunteered her time to support with administrative matters and who is now working part-time for TESL Canada.

In terms of services, one of our objectives was to ensure that the TESL Canada Journal and the related SSHRC funding was transferred into the capable hands of our Journal Editors, Dr. Farahnaz Faez and Dr. Antonella Valeo. We are so pleased that the Editors have been able to publish the special issue on formulaic language with guest editor, Dr. David Wood and the regular issue for 2017 which is now online at:

We look very forward to the 2018 issues and are very appreciative of the hard work of Dr. Faez and Dr. Valeo in maintaining this excellent academic publication.

Also, during the fall and into the winter, we sought out possibilities for an external service to manage the complex work of teacher training program accreditation. Although much time was spent collaborating with Orion, the service used by Languages Canada for their language programs, we were not able to come to a proposal that was workable and affordable for our valued TTPs. Therefore, we are now in the process of reactivating TTPR on a somewhat reduced basis in order to maintain the service for TTPs already recognized by TESL Canada. Later this summer we will be sending out an invitation for annual reports and will be inviting those who are due for renewals to submit their applications for adjudication. As we move forward, we hope to reopen TTPR to new programs, but for the next 6 months, we will focus on currently recognized TTPs (see appendix A for the list of current TTPRs).

Teacher Certification was another priority and with the ability to hire Donna on a part-time basis and with the unwavering support of our Standards Chair, Dmitri Priven, we have been able to reactivate this service in February. It was a huge learning curve for myself and for Donna, but we are now able to process applications fairly smoothly with the competent and professional work of adjudicators. For your information, I have attached some stats related to certification so that members can see that we are actively processing applications from across the country (see appendix B for the Certification numbers for 2017-18).  

Our financial situation has stabilized and our outgoing treasurer, Brian Courtney, will be giving the detailed report on this matter. Brian has streamlined the financial matters and will be able to transition a new treasurer smoothly into this position. Also, TESL Canada has been able to retain our accountant and we are cognizant of the important work that he does to provide financial advice and manage the account. I would like to give Brian a formal word of gratitude as he has been tireless and highly professional in his handling of this challenging portfolio.

One final note, and this will be one of our priorities in the next year, our relationship to the provincial TESL organizations remains an area of focus and careful consideration. Although some provinces signed an interim memorandum of agreement, not everyone felt they were able to do so. I want to recognize TESL NB, TESL NS, TESL SK, and TESL NL for their moral and financial support and to TEAL MB and ATESL for keeping the lines of communication and collegiality open (see appendix F for Provincial reports).  Because we believe that TESL Canada is a national organization that needs voices from all provinces, we are going to look at creative ways to keep real connections to the provinces. In addition to ensuring Board representation from across the country, we also want to find a workable way to communicate and collaborate regularly with ALL provincial associations. One of our hopes for the future is to be able to participate in some professional learning opportunities and finding ways to offer some small PL bursaries through our TCEF fund.

As I close this report, my final special note of appreciation goes to Judy Sillito, past president, without whom I would not have been able to do any of this work. In particular, I wish to thank her for not only being a voice of support and expertise throughout this year, but in also taking on the nomination committee tasks and encouraging members from across Canada to join the Board. We are so pleased to have national representation including board member nominations from NB, NS, Alberta, Ontario, Quebec, Saskatchewan, and BC. Because we only have one nominee for each position on the board, no vote will be required. That being said, we will be putting the list of nominees on the website and a motion will be made at the AGM to approve the slate of nominations. I am looking forward to working with both new and familiar faces as we step into this next year.

Most importantly, I am hopeful that we can all work together as we strive to maintain our services, strengthen our national voice, and collaborate together as TESL professionals.

Respectfully submitted,

Paula Kristmanson

Acting President




Become a Board Member!
Leave your mark. 

TESL Canada is calling on motivated and energetic individuals to serve on the Board of Directors. We are currently recruiting board members for the 2018/2019 year. The deadline for applications is May 31, 2018.

TESL Canada finds itself at a precipice. With the transitions we have witnessed in the past year, we have been challenged to re-define our objectives, maintain our independence, and ensure successful and sustainable programs for teacher certification, teacher-training program recognition, professional development, and the TESL Canada Journal. Through the commendable commitment of our board, volunteers, partners, and members, we have managed to preserve and persevere.

With almost 30 years of experience behind us, what legacies do we want to contribute to the future of our profession in Canada? What are the stories we want to tell at our 30th Anniversary Celebration? What are the decisions we need to make now to make sure those dreams become realities?

Be a part of the team leading us into the future! 


AGM – June 9, 2018, Fredericton, New Brunswick  


Letter from the Acting President

March 28, 2018


Dear Members,

Now that spring has arrived (although we may be questioning that premise in certain parts of the country!), I thought it was time to touch base with everyone once again. We had a great TESL Canada Board meeting last week, good representation from across the country and very productive discussions. We are very pleased to have stabilized our financial situation with the paring down of expenses to just the necessities. This has allowed us to be able to hire a part-time administrator and we have reopened individual certification . Inquiries and applications have already begun to come in and we anticipate that we will be able to process these in a timely (4-6 weeks) fashion depending on complexity of application (in particular PLAR) and numbers of applications received. Remember that if your province is not a member of TESL Canada, you must pay for your individual direct membership.

In addition to individual membership, the standards committee communicated with teacher training programs to let them know that, based on their feedback regarding a proposal for an external service, we are now revisiting an in-house solution. With expenses now reduced to the very basics and with some renewed financial stability, we are hopeful that we will research a solution soon. In the meantime, active TTPRs have all been given a 6-month extension.

In terms of communication and dissemination of information, we have reactivated our twitter account, and continue to update the website and send regular messages to members (and former members) and recognized TTPs. These communiques include promoting provincial conferences like TESL SK’s coming up in April and TESL NS’s which will take place at Acadia University in May-

We also announced the publication of the latest TESL Canada Journal special issue and sent a call for papers for TCJ Finally, we will forward any useful professional development information that we receive from organizations and people in the TESL field whom we follow.  Related to this is our most recent message regarding our communication with TESOL international’s president and their convention and announcement of the six principles We will continue to make communication a priority and will meet with IRCC in April and hopefully organize another provincial presidents’ meeting.

Wishing all of you a lovely spring. Feel free to contact us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

at any time. If you are planning a spring conference, I hope it is a positive professional learning experience. If TESL Canada can do anything to help support or promote it, please let us know.



Paula Kristmanson

Acting President

On behalf of the TESL Canada Board


 teal sask  sk teal


Methodology in Action | April 20 – 21, 2018


Dear TESL Canada, 

TESL SK / SK TEAL will hold its annual conference at the Hilton DoubleTree Hotel in Regina, Saskatchewan. Approximately 150 people are expected to attend the conference on each day. Registrants will reflect all stakeholders in our province: Adult ESL teachers, K-12 EAL teachers, Teacher-trainers, TESL students, settlement agencies, government agencies, funders, and volunteers.

We extend a warm invitation to participate in our community based organizations' display room. The area will be centrally located allowing for easy access and maximum viewing. There are no fees per table. Each table is 6 feet long, and organizations are welcome to request any number of tables. If you wish to have a display and attend, please provide the following information:

  • The number of tables you require
  • Technical support needed
  • Donations of any door prizes

Additional details, such as set-up times, will be provided after confirmation of attendance. For those who wish to stay at the conference hotel, a special rate is available which includes breakfast. In the event you are unable to attend the conference, you are welcome to send us pamphlets, materials and resources for display. These items can be returned upon request. 

This is a wonderful opportunity for your organization to reach a wide audience; therefore, we thank you for your extensive interest in SK TEAL and TESL SK and look forward to seeing you at our annual conference!


Selinda England

Conference Planning Committee Member

Contact:   This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. | Conference  &


Our Proud Sponsors:

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2017 conf

TESL Canada Conference 2017 - Conference Presentation Materials for Download

The TESL Canada Conference in Niagara Falls was a great experience, and now many of this year’s presenters have graciously made their presentation materials available for you to view or download!

Find instructions on how to access the material on the TESL Canada Conference 2017 Program page.