There should be no provincial government subsidies for children in faith-based private schools, Ontario’s public elementary teachers say.
“The promise by the Ontario Progressive Conservative Party to provide financial help to parents who send their children to private religious schools will undermine public education,” said Emily Noble, president of the Elementary Teachers’ Federation of Ontario (ETFO).
“I am surprised to see that the Conservative Party under John Tory has not learned from the mistakes made by the previous Conservative administration,” Noble said. “Under Mike Harris the Tories showed they were no friends of public education.
“They gutted public education funding, damaging the prospects for the province’s children – particularly the most vulnerable. Their plan to provide tax credits for private schools would have removed $300 million from the education system – money the system desperately needs to help children meet the challenges they face.”
Noble pointed out that the McGuinty government has worked hard to reverse this damage. “A great deal remains to be done. But the Liberals have recognized that our public investment should be directed to improving public education, available to all children in Ontario.
“Parents have the right to send their children to private schools if they wish,” Noble added. “They should not expect to receive public funds to support that choice.”