President Hammond delivering his statement to the press
On September 4th, 2018, the first day of the new school year, ETFO announced legal action against the Ontario government regarding its repeal of the 2015 Health and Physical Education Curriculum and its anonymous parent 'snitch line.'
The repeal was an unprecedented and unnecessary attack on kids and professional educators. When the government declared that the Health and Physical Education Curriculum would revert to an older edition, key topics were removed. Students need and deserve modern-day information and answers to their questions. In effect, the government has acted to take educators, and their students, backwards.
ETFO's position is that the government’s actions are in direct conflict with professional obligations that are enshrined within the Education Act and the Standards of Practice of the Ontario College of Teachers. ETFO believes that the government's directive is also in conflict with the Ontario Human Rights Code and the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
With regards to the government's 'snitch line,' not only is this a waste of public funds, it ignores the systems already in place for parents and educators to deal constructively with issues at the school level. In addition, ETFO is concerned that this anonymous portal will become an outlet for bullies, hate and potentially a mechanism to out lesbian, gay, and bisexual educators.
At today's media conference ETFO President Sam Hammond, accompanied by lead counsel Howard Goldblatt, announced that the Federation had filed this Notice of Application (PDF | Word) seeking an injunction against the government to stop its unprecedented and unnecessary attack on kids and professional educators in Ontario. This statement was also released to media outlets around the province.