(TORONTO, ON) – This week, Ontario’s Education Minister, Liz Sandals, released a long awaited update to the Ministry’s Health and Physical Education curriculum, which provide teachers with guidelines for nutrition, overall physical wellness, and sexual education.
It’s the first update on sexual education since the invention of Google in 1998 and, the Ontario Libertarian Party (OLP) agrees, that is a long time ago. The details around body parts, and their functions, certainly have not changed, however social norms, values, laws, and technologies have.
The sexual education part of the new curriculum has been met with considerable resistance from parents and organized groups. The major areas of concern, centre on the grade level at which sex subjects are taught, and their age appropriateness.
That is completely understandable.
Ontario Libertarians agree that education curriculum guidelines need to be revised periodically to keep up with new knowledge. The OLP believes it’s important that children get the most up-to-date information on all subjects throughout their school years.
The question to ask is, why should any curriculum be under the control of politicians or the provincial government?
A curriculum should not be one-size-fits-all in a province as large and culturally diverse as Ontario.
There is little point in disputing the content, timeliness, or appropriateness of the subject matter taught in school. The OLP believes that is not the function of political parties or even governments.
If education is to be a service delivered by educators for the benefit of children, Libertarians believe it is the parent’s needs, on behalf of their children, that must be served, not the needs of the system.
The system that exists now must be reconfigured to serve parents so that they may direct their taxes to a school of their choice. Libertarians believe that the competitive situation, that will result from this change, will best serve the needs of Ontario now and in the future.
Parents within their local community should have as much control as possible over the education of their children.
In the meantime, parents have the right to have their children opt out of objectionable information for personal or religious reasons. They may also remove their children entirely from the system opting for home schooling.
The Ontario Libertarian Party has been a registered political party since 1975. The OLP advocates for individual liberty through free markets, property rights, and limited government. Contact the Ontario Libertarian Party for more information.