- To provide flexible and accessible services that enable newcomers to succeed and reach their full potential.
- To provide a comprehensive online environment that brings resources, people and technology together to address newcomers’ unique needs for settlement and integration into the workplace and community.
English Online was born out of the growing need for EAL/ESL services for newcomers to Manitoba. With immigration levels rising exponentially, the Adult Language Training (ALT) Branch of Manitoba Labour and Immigration initiated the start-up of the organization in 2006 to increase the EAL/ESL learning opportunities available. In the same year, a strategic plan was drafted, emphasizing online education as a scalable and effective way to address learning challenges for rural Manitobans, as well as for those who could not take advantage of existing programs due to access barriers.
In 2008, English Online was finally launched and incorporated as a not-for-profit. Reporting to a volunteer board of directors, its first Executive Director, Briar Jamieson, began to spearhead the organization. After the organization’s Online Learning Platform was launched, it began receiving learners referred by the Winnipeg English Language Assessment and Referral Centre (WELARC).
In the early years, the company’s initial learners grew to 2,000. An Online Learning Platform was also customized for language learning management specifically for English for Specific Purposes learners of other Service Provider Organizations, including the Manitoba Nurses Union and the University of Winnipeg. In 2010-2011, English Online Inc. designed the first online language e-portfolio (Electronic Collaborative Language Portfolio Assessment). Today, it has an average of 1000 learners per year referred by centres in Winnipeg, Brandon, Steinbach and pre-arrival services.
English Online embarked on a new milestone when it launched its new website You Live and Learn.ca in March, 2015. The new site features, not only its English Language learning options, but a section for articles on 12 settlement themes. This expanded the organization’s operations to include settlement services complemented by language learning activities and programs.