Taxpayer-supported Roman Catholic education in Ontario is guaranteed by the Constitution. But a conflict in Halton Region shows the risk that Roman Catholic educational leaders take when they place their own faith ahead of the expectations of the public.
The Ontario government requires school boards to have an “equity and inclusive education strategy,” and the Halton Catholic District School Board complies, with a policy that seeks to “foster racial and ethno-cultural understanding and respect.”
But, for a time, understanding stopped when it came to gay teens. A policy passed in November by the outgoing board banned “gay-straight alliances or clubs,” after Rev. Paul-André Durocher, the chair of the education commission of the Assembly of Catholic Bishops of Ontario, had written a letter saying such alliances “imply a self-identification with sexual orientation that is often premature among high school students.”
The ban sent a chilling message that homosexual teens in Catholic schools should be shunned, not recognized or supported, by their peers.
The Roman Catholic Church is in the best position to interpret its own teachings. But it is not for the Church, by itself, to run Roman Catholic education in Ontario.
That is the job of school trustees, who answer to many authorities: the Roman Catholic Church, yes, but also the Ministry of Education, human-rights laws, and parents and taxpayers.
On Tuesday night, a committee of new trustees recommended that the ban on gay-straight alliances be lifted. Several showed a commendable understanding of their political duties. Paul Marai, an openly gay 22-year-old trustee, said, “Bishops should have their input, but it’s a collective decision.”
The foundation on which publicly funded Roman Catholic education exists may be legally solid, but its political support can never be taken for granted. No board should flirt with anti-homosexual edicts, as did the former trustees of Halton.
At first glance you want to say well with all the gay priests , what is the
The gay priests are a bit like the former US military policy of not flaunting the fact however while being gay, at least gay priests publicly support the marriage of men and women together in matrimony to create children.
It's that principle that is saving Canada from an even lower birth rate than we have at present, and if the negative birth rate is not dealt with , rapidly, we will have an aging population that will be an economic time bomb.
Catholic schools are supposedly promoters of marriage between men and women, having someone who publicly acts to promote the gay and lesbian lifestyle as a member of that church, is extremely insulting, and is a promotion of hatred towards the church and the catholic education system.
We already have entire neigbourhoods where gay and lesbian "families" outnumber the straight, they have their own schools and churches, and if they can leave the Catholic school system alone, they will a lot of respect while actually promoting their own future queer population as it still takes a man and a women to create a baby.