Meet our Team

Our Teacher Leaders

Amanda Cloutier

Thank you for being here and for being a part of this project! The Collective Catalogue of FSL Novels for Diversity is a passion project of mine that started in fall 2020. It came after a lot of self-reflection following the PDSB's Anti-Black Racism Report and following Ministry Directives in spring 2020 and is a way for me to continue to learn about how to be a culturally-responsive, anti-oppressive, and anti-racist teacher, and to work with others towards bettering our classrooms. It means the world to me that so many teachers have gotten involved!

I am a secondary teacher with the Peel District School Board and am still relatively new on my teaching journey. I am split between the FSL and Math departments, and always trying to carve out time for a good book!

Rubina (Ruby) Sharma

I am very grateful and excited for the opportunity to work alongside this amazing group of inspiring educators who are dedicated to improving FSL learning for all students. I began my journey with the team by connecting through our shared Twitter Professional Learning Network. I was immediately drawn to the engaging and open dialogue that Mandy and Amanda were leading to diversify texts in FSL. Furthermore, the way in which the team was using technology and social media to make tangible and measurable change across board and district lines, demonstrated a true collaborative spirit. I was inspired to join the team and align our work to diversify the texts we use in our FSL classes.

As a French teacher, department, school and system leader for both Core and Immersion FSL programs for nearly twenty years in YRDSB, as well as in my role as a course instructor and developer for FSL AQ courses, I am committed to offering my support to this important project. Collaborating to create more inclusive and diverse FSL learning spaces, from an anti-oppressive and anti-racist stance, should be the goal of all educators in FSL. I look forward to our ongoing work to put actionable, engaging, relevant and culturally responsive resources into the hands of FSL educators for the benefit of all our students.

Our Research Team

Marie-Emilie (Mimi) Masson

When Amanda reached out with this project idea, I was hooked! It's such a privilege for me to be able to learn alongside FSL teachers! What a pleasure to see so much passion among our dedicated language educators. I hope I can support FSL teachers' work by helping to create resources that are useful for them and being a part of the process of becoming an anti-racist educator to make our FSL program more equitable and reflective of the rich linguistic and cultural diversity in our classes.

I currently work as a Part-time Professor at the Faculty of Education, University of Ottawa. I completed my PhD in Language and Literacies Education at OISE (University of Toronto) and worked as an elementary and junior high school English as a foreign language (EFL) teacher in Nagasaki (Japan). I am presently the cohort lead of the Second Language Education Cohort (cL2c) in the Teacher Education program at uOttawa. My research focuses on second language teacher professional learning and identity development with a special focus on investigating the knowledge base of French as second language (FSL) teachers (including anti-racist pedagogies and culturally-responsive teaching), collaborative learning networks, and arts-based research and teaching methodologies.

Previous Team Members

(a big thank you for all your support!)

Mandy T.

I am really thrilled to be a part of this project! When Amanda discussed her idea for the book club in the fall of 2020 with me, I knew this was an endeavour that I wanted to be a part of. I am passionate about teaching, French, and reading as a past time so the combination of all 3 really intrigued me.

One of the other reasons this project is exciting to me is that it allows for teachers with the same interests and passions to come together and work collaboratively and learn from each other. Our weekly schedules are packed with lesson planning, teaching, marking, assessing, conferencing, reporting, and extra-curriculars and often we run out of time to talk with colleagues, share ideas, and help one another.

In addition to meeting with other like-minded teachers, I am also l striving to strengthen my anti-racist teaching practice in the classroom. Book club will give me the opportunity to explore a variety of culturally responsive texts and provide a more inclusive curriculum that will make my students feel valued and empowered.

I have been a Core French teacher for 20 years, 19 of those years in the Peel District School Board. My favourite YA book is Noughts & Crosses by Malorie Blackman!

Alaa Azan

I’m so lucky to be part of this project and to work alongside passionate educators. I’ve learned so much from all stages of this project on the importance of collaborative learning. Seeing the teachers’ dedication and enthusiasm for change and betterment in FSL classrooms continue to inspire me as I embark on the next chapter in my journey in the field of education.

I’m in my final year of the master’s program in the Faculty of Education at the University of Ottawa. I’m interested in documenting youth lived experiences in educational institutions. I’m currently focusing on highlighting the perspectives of high school students and their parents with online tutoring services for math.

Anza Rizwan

I'm so privileged and honored to be the new research assistant for this Book Club Project alongside a phenomenal group of dedicated women educators. As the tagline of the project highlights, the importance of inclusivity and diversity in our classrooms starts with updating our own bookshelves with novels by and about Indigenous people, and people of color- to use these novels to disrupt racism in our classes and our communities.

I’m a third-year undergraduate student pursuing an Honours degree in English Second Language Teaching (ESL) and specializing in Clinical Psychology. My research interest is in racialized populations and their access to digital literacy alongside making education more accessible within margins. I’m currently leading language workshops at uOttawa's Official Languages and Bilingualism Institute (OLBI) focusing on helping non-native students develop their communication and conversational speaking skills.