The Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario (ETFO) has denounced Doug Ford’s government’s decision to repeal the current sex-ed curriculum and is advising teachers to continue to exercise their professional judgment when it comes to teaching all sections of the current curriculum.
The union announced Monday it will “vigorously defend” any educator who continues using the modern sex-ed curriculum, calling the provincial government’s decision to revert to the 1998 curriculum “irresponsible and discriminatory” adding that it “jeopardizes the safety of the students that we teach.”
The Progressive Conservative government’s plan will have students taught a previous sex-ed curriculum that dates back 20 years, rather than the modernized curriculum that was instated by the Liberals in 2015.
The modernized sex-ed program, which has been referred to as “controversial” and is opposed by social conservatives, covers topics like sexual orientation, same-sex relationships, sexting, and consent.
“Teachers will not be muzzled by a government whose political agenda takes precedence over the protection and education of their students,” said ETFO President Sam Hammond at the Federation’s Annual Meeting.
“We need to prepare students for the world of 2018, not the world of 1998.”
Hammond added that the government’s actions are in direct conflict with the Ontario Human Rights Code and the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms adding this plan infringes upon the freedom of speech of teachers to provide proper education to their students.
“ETFO will vigorously defend members who continue to follow the 2015 Health Curriculum and will pursue all options to respond appropriately to the government’s reckless behaviour.”
ETFO represents 83,000 teachers across the province.
On Tuesday, August 14, members of ETFO and the public are rallying at Queen’s Park to continue protesting the sex-ed repeal. The rally will take place at 12:30 pm.