Parents against cuts to education in Ontario public schools

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AN OPEN LETTER TO PREMIER FORD AND MPP LECCE:

In recent weeks, you have repeatedly spoken on behalf of Ontario parents. We have seen this happen at public events, in the news and, with regard to Lecce in particular, on social media. You talk about “what parents want”, describe our feelings toward teachers as impatient and assert that your government is doing what’s right for families. Many of us find this distressing, particularly as these claims are being made despite you having no significant dialogue with Ontario parents. Furthermore, we are concerned that your collective lack of personal and professional experience in the public education system makes you unable to understand the damage your cuts are making and will continue to make. 

We will not be idle with our children’s education, and we will not be shut out of this conversation. The decisions your government makes do not just impact students’ academic futures - they affect our children’s physical safety and mental health.

It’s time that you listened to parents instead of speaking for us. Among other issues, these are our concerns:

  • Cuts to special education funding, hurting our most at-need students
  • An increase to the number of students in each classroom, leaving less one-on-one support for all students
  • Insufficient EA support; lack of support for teachers dealing with classroom violence
  • Mandatory e-learning for high school students (vs optional), which creates the potential for further privatization and sets many students up for hardship or failure
  • Loss of course options at the high school level 
  • Potential loss of the existing one teacher, one early childhood educator model kindergarten (FDK)

As parents in the public school system, we have witnessed the immeasurable impact an educator can have on a child’s life. We value teachers, EAs, ECEs and support staff, and are incredibly grateful that they’re fighting for our kids. A strike is inconvenient, but the alternative is far worse.

This letter is sent both in frustration and with hope for a better tomorrow. Please open the lines of communication with parents and allow us to speak for ourselves. Listen to our concerns, which are valid and of critical importance to our children’s future. Make decisions that benefit Ontario students - ALL students, regardless of difference or privilege - instead of pleasing bureaucrats. We challenge you to listen, learn and do better.

Ontario parents against cuts to education

#ParentsAgainstCuts