Parents seek veto on sexuality teaching in Ontario schools

TORONTO — A group of conservative Christian and Muslim parents in Ontario want schools to notify them before their children … Continued

TORONTO — A group of conservative Christian and Muslim parents in Ontario want schools to notify them before their children are taught about sexuality, birth control, “environmental worship” and occult practices.

Just days after Ontario passed an anti-bullying law that promotes acceptance of diversity, the parents began distributing a four-page form letter to their children’s elementary schools in and around Toronto.

Titled “Choosing to Remain in the Public System,” the downloadable form asks that parents be advised prior to their children’s exposure to sex education and discussions about homosexuality, transgender issues and abortion; “environmental worship — placing environmental issues/concerns above the value of Judeo-Christian principles and human life”; and teachings about occult practices, including witchcraft, Satanism and “wizardry.”

The parents say they want advance notice so they can either withdraw their children before the lesson, or prepare them in advance.

The letter is spearheaded by PEACE (Public Education Advocates for Christian Equity) Hamilton, a Christian parents group. Phil Lees, who heads PEACE, says “hundreds” of the letters have been delivered to schools in Toronto and Hamilton, Ontario.

“We’ve met with a half dozen Muslim groups and they are very passionate about this too,” Lees said.

Meanwhile, a Greek Orthodox father has sued the Hamilton school board for refusing to warn him when his children’s teachers plan to talk about family, marriage or human sexuality.

Steve Tourloukis told reporters on Sept. 10 that he only wants those issues taught to his first-grade daughter and fourth-grade son “from a Christian perspective.”

Tourloukis is backed by the newly formed Parental Rights in Education Defense Fund, which is collecting money for parents who sue school boards over their “unconstitutional suppression of religious freedom and conscience rights.”

“If parents do not beat back this government incursion against parent rights,” the group’s website says, “it will usher in an era of persecution against people of faith like never seen before in Canada.”

School officials say parents can request their child be excused only from certain portions of sex education.

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  • tanyawersinger

    catken, are you their parent? Parents have the duty and right to bring up their children with the values they believe in, not you or the govenment. They are the children’s primary educator. They are responsible for their children’s wellbeing, and the government and you should be supportive of these parents.

  • cricket44

    The parents have the right to do this. The sad thing is that their children are going to hear from other children and what they hear may or may not be factual. That’s actually one of the reasons I made sure my daughter got the facts, ALL of them, so that when she was talking to her friends whose parents were convinced they were sheltering them, at least it would be the truth.

  • Catken1

    You have a right to teach your kids your own values. (Although sometimes values can be abusive – we don’t let parents bring their kids up with the values they believe in if those values involve, say, beating or starving kids or refusing them medical treatment.) However, when you teach lies as fact, or deny your kid the right to learn the actual scientific facts about their world, you are intruding on your child’s right to learn, and hindering their mental and emotional well-being. And by describing environmental science as idolatry, and preaching unrestricted reproduction as a holy good, they also teach their kids that it’s not important to look after resources and a planet that we all have to share, thus making my kid’s future less certain and less happy.

    And no, I’m not going to be “supportive” of parents who teach kids that gay people are abominations, that breeding is the highest and most necessary purpose of sex in an already overpopulated world, and that protecting the safety and beauty of the world we all have to live in together is “ecology worship”. I have to tolerate their existence. I do not have to support them, kiss up to them, or tell them what a lovely job they’re doing. That is MY First Amendment right.