Archive for the ‘Education History’ Category


Once a school troublemaker, Charles Pascal died a visionary for transforming education in Ontario

Tuesday, May 2nd, 2023

… the first full-time executive director of the Atkinson Charitable Foundation… was key in establishing the Ontario Child Tax benefit, the Canadian Index of Wellbeing and early learning policy… The genesis of full-day kindergarten began with a pilot project led by the foundation… providing a model that has been adopted in other provinces.

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Laurentian’s vision has been betrayed and destroyed

Tuesday, May 4th, 2021

Laurentian University is not simply a corporate entity, modelled on the worst aspects of private enterprise… I urge all those who have created the Laurentian community to peel back the rhetoric of false promises offered by current deceitful leadership. A theft is occurring — stealing opportunities, historic relationships and the building of knowledge. Now let us stand together to protect and advance the vision and achievements of a university that served its community with honour and pride.

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We can no longer afford to whitewash our history

Sunday, August 12th, 2018

The headlines about the residential schools was the catalyst that made the government admit that the history we’ve been taught has been whitewashed. All Canadian children need to know that their culture has made contributions to Canadian society… Writing workshops were scheduled this summer to update the curriculum…. But one month after the Ontario election, just before the legislature resumed, these workshops, years in the making, were suddenly cancelled.

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Social media is no more a nemesis to democracy than books

Saturday, January 6th, 2018

… this method of communication makes it easier to create anti-democratic movements… editors of the Economist magazine drew up an even more severe charge sheet. Social media, they said, spreads untruth and outrage, creating a “politics of contempt” in the process… A historic pattern lies behind these troubled accusations. When a new form of communication is invented and becomes popular, it creates uneasiness… It may be used by people with dangerous ideas.

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Sir John A. not the only prime minister who wouldn’t pass muster today

Monday, August 28th, 2017

For now Macdonald is safe. Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne has pledged not to strip his name from any schools. But I’d be surprised if any new government buildings were named after the first prime minister. In fact, it might be less controversial to avoid naming anything after anybody. At least until we can find someone who will remain flawless for all time.

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John A. Macdonald was the real architect of residential schools

Sunday, July 9th, 2017

It was Macdonald, not Langevin, who served as the Superintendent General of Indian Affairs and was responsible for overseeing the establishment of residential schooling… In the late 1870s, Macdonald dreamed of creating an organized system of federal schools for Indigenous children that could be used to disrupt Indigenous lifeways and control over the land to accelerate successful settler colonialism.

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Toronto children need more prosperity, not more charity

Wednesday, November 19th, 2014

… fully 29 per cent of children in this city live in poverty… Typically, the response, public and private, is to focus on programs that deal with the symptoms of poverty rather than its sources… Ottawa has abandoned the poor and the cost of poverty to local governments, which don’t have the means to deal with either… That’s because cities have little control over economic matters… Meanwhile, the Conservative government boasts of its impending surplus. This is pure illusion; the deficit hasn’t gone away, it’s been dumped on Canada’s cities.

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Posted in Education History, Governance Debates | 2 Comments »

Austerity Canadian-style, now in Britain? Pity

Sunday, November 14th, 2010

November 12, 2010
The British government is happily taking a page from the Canadian playbook of the mid-1990s, when our own age of austerity reshaped public policy and the role of the state. Massive federal budget cuts in 1995 devolved responsibility for a range of social programs to the provinces and territories who, in turn, pushed costs onto municipalities and hospitals, schools and universities, community organizations and households. One result of this cascade of downloading is that undergraduate university tuitions have more than doubled across Canada and tripled in Ontario since 1995.

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What happened to Canada’s education advantage?

Tuesday, October 20th, 2009 – Opinion/Comment – What happened to Canada’s education advantage?  We steered away just as the world was entering the knowledge economy.  When Mike Harris was premier, funding for education was cut by $1 billion, including a 25 per cent cut for universities.
Published On Tue Oct 20 2009.   Roger Martin

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Disabilities not a reason to send a person to ‘jail’ [warehousing people with physical, developmental and psychiatric disabilities]

Thursday, April 2nd, 2009 – Life/Health – Disabilities not a reason to send a person to ‘jail’
April 2, 2009.  ANDRE PICARD

On Tuesday night, on the grounds of the Ontario legislature, a group of community-living activists and former residents of institutions gathered for a candlelight vigil.

They were celebrating a historic moment in the evolution of health and social-welfare systems that occurred when, on March 31, Ontario closed the last three large institutions for people with developmental disabilities.

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