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Toolkit

ACCESSING EDUCATION FOR CHILDREN AND YOUTH WITH AUTISM AND/OR INTELLECTUAL DISABILITY: Seeking to Ensure Educational Needs are Met

Tanya McConnell BCYC, CCYCC & Hilary Nelson, J.D.
This toolkit is a resource to better understand a child’s right to publicly-funded education. It offers information related to attending school in Canada, and the pursuit of one’s right to education.

 

 

Photo by Kenny Eliason on Unsplash

 

Researched & Written

C, CCYCC & Hilary Nelson, J.D.


Please note that this toolkit is not meant to be a substitute for the advice of a lawyer. If you are considering legal action against a school board, government, or other party you should get professional legal advice.


Who is this Toolkit For?

The information provided is for anyone who has a child or loved one with autism, intellectual disability or another disability, who is or will be attending school in Canada. The toolkit is meant to be a resource to better understand your child’s rights and needs to a publicly-funded education.

Each province and territory has both achievements and challenges within its educational system. In this toolkit, an overview of educational rights in Canada is provided, with resources and contact information specific to each province/territory.

 

The Right to Meaningfully Access the Benefits of Education

The Canadian constitution guarantees the right to education, and sets out who is responsible for providing and protecting that right. Under the constitution, each province and territory has a unique set of human rights codes and education laws and policies – all of which address a child’s right to education. Below are sections from the Constitution and the Charter of Rights and Freedoms that ensure the rights of children in Canada to education.

Constitutional Act, 1867, Section 93: Each province and territory has the responsibility for matters relating to education within their borders.
Charter of Rights & Freedoms, Section 23: Each provincial and territorial government is to provide education to students in the official language (e.g., English or French) of their choice.
Charter of Rights & Freedoms, Section 15 (1): Every individual is equal before and under the law and has the right to the equal protection and equal benefit of the law without discrimination and without discrimination based on race, national or ethnic origin, colour, religion, sex, age or mental or physical disability

Every child has the constitutional right to access the benefits of education. This means that a person or an organization fails to protect a child's right if they discriminate against the child, or if they don't give enough thought to that child's unique needs. Here are some Canadian cases that talk about a province's obligations.

CASE REVIEW: Moore v British Columbia (Education)[1] is a landmark case in education rights for students with disabilities in Canada. While the case began in British Columbia, the final decision by the Supreme Court of Canada means that its principles are applicable to all provinces and territories.

As summarized by Moore v British Columbia (Education)[2]: “Adequate special education, therefore, is not a dispensable luxury. For those with severe learning disabilities, it is the ramp that provides access to the statutory commitment to education made to all children.”

This means that the programs that students with disabilities receive, must be comparable to the services that are normally available to other students. Education is the protected public service; special education is how students with disabilities receive the general education services available to all students.[3]

[1] Moore v British Columbia (Education), 2012 3 SCR.

[2] Moore v British Columbia (Education), 2012 3 SCR at para 5

[3] Moore v British Columbia (Education), 2012 3 SCR at para 28

 

How do I advocate for my child’s needs?

Self-advocacy

Speak with your child’s teachers, school administrators, and professional experts to discuss resources and strategies to meet your child’s needs. Collaboration and cooperation, when it is successful, can often help ensure the necessary supports for your child.

 

Legal Options

Sometimes you will have done everything you can to advocate for your child, and satisfactory solutions have not been achieved. In these circumstances, it may be appropriate to consider legal options.

If you are considering legal action, it is important to understand the legal process, what will be considered in the legal analysis, and who has the responsibility (or the burden of proof) to provide evidence to establish elements of the case. There are two stages of analysis in discrimination cases. The first stage relies on the individual alleging discrimination, or the Applicant, to establish the legal grounds of discrimination, or the prima facie discrimination. This stage must be successful for the legal analysis to move onto the second stage. On a finding of prima facie discrimination, the second stage is for the defending party, or the Respondent, to provide evidence showing a reason or justification for the discrimination. The following provides more details, and examples of each stage.

 

Legal Analysis: Stage 1

The legal wording and test for stage 1, as found in Moore v British Columbia (Education), 2012 3 SCR, is outlined below.

Stage 1: Establishing legal grounds of discrimination (Responsibility of the Applicant)
(i.e., know what you need to prove)
  1. Applicant must first establish prima facie discrimination, or evidence of potential discrimination on first impression, by showing: 
    1. Presence of a characteristic protected from discrimination;
    2. Establish an adverse impact on a service customarily available to public; and
    3. Show the connection between the protected characteristic and adverse impact.
-drawn from Moore v. British Columbia (Education), 2012 3 SCR

The legal grounds for points a and b (above) are found in the human rights legislation of each province and territory, where education is an accepted public service and protected characteristics from discrimination are identified. See Appendix A for a table highlighting where the right to education without discrimination is specifically protected in the human rights legislation of each province and territory.

Below are cases that have been in Canadian courts, with legal decisions relating to education access for children with specific learning needs. These examples illustrate instances of circumstances where families, seeking specific forms or means of education, were successful in establishing the legal grounds of discrimination, or prima facie discrimination.

 

Case Study #1: (Moore v British Columbia (Education), 2012 3 SCR)

J was a student with severe dyslexia receiving in-class and supplemental in-school supports through his public school in British Columbia. As time passed, his needs increased and he was unable to receive the supports required in his public school. He underwent an assessment with a school district psychologist when he was in Grade 2. It was recommended by a school district psychologist that he attend the local Diagnostic Centre funded by the school district to receive the necessary supports. When this recommendation was discussed with school administrators, it was revealed that the local Diagnostic Centre was closed by the school district due to funding constraints. The school did not provide any additional supports to support J’s increased needs. J struggled in his public school before he transferred to a private school specializing in learning disabilities when he was in Grade 4.

On behalf of J, the family sought damages and reimbursement for J’s private school tuition based on an alleged breach of human right to education by the school district.

The family was successful in establishing prima facie discrimination for the following reasons. J has the right to access education services. Dyslexia is a protected category from discrimination. The school district failed to provide adequate supports to facilitate J’s right to education based on his dyslexia.

 

Case Study #2: (Jobb v Parkland School Division No. 70, 2017 AHRC 3)

CJ was a student with learning disabilities, including motor, language, and cognitive delays, receiving specialized supports at an inclusive public school in Alberta. School staff and CJ’s parents collaborated for a time on appropriate supports through use of annual Individualized Program Plans (IPP) and ongoing assessments with professionals. However, CJ’s parents did not believe that CJ was being challenged to improve and that the accommodations did not always benefit CJ. After a time and consultation with experts, CJ’s parents indicated to the school that they believed that CJ would benefit from strategies that reflected use of a specific technique to improve cognitive abilities, known as the Arrowsmith Method. The school declined to implement the method. CJ was eventually enrolled in a private school specializing in the Arrowsmith Method in Grade 8.

On behalf of CJ, the family sought reimbursement and funding for CJ’s private school tuition based on an alleged breach of human right to education by the school division.

The family was successful in establishing prima facie discrimination for the following reasons. CJ has the right to access education services. Learning disabilities are a protected category from discrimination. The school division was not able to provide comparable access to general education to CJ because of his learning disabilities.

 

Case Study # 3 (DB v Toronto District School Board, 2021 HRTO 991)

DB was an eight-year-old student diagnosed with moderate to severe Autism Spectrum Disorder in Ontario, who is non-verbal and had established safety needs. Due to previously available provincial funding, he attended a specialist private centre for 32.5 hours per week receiving Applied Behavioural Analysis (ABA) programming. Due to a decrease in available funding, DB’s parents began to investigate educational options and supports available in the local public school in January 2019 for a September 1, 2019 start date. A referral for an Intensive Support Program (ISP) happened after an early consultation about DB’s needs and receipt of available supports. The referral process was for an ICP placement aimed at developmental disorders as there was no space available in an ASD-specific placement. DP’s mother expressed concern about whether the supports available were appropriate to meet DB’s intensive needs. DB’s family accepted the ICP placement on June 4, 2019, and filed a complaint with the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal by the end of June 2019. The complaint alleged inadequate action taken by the school to have required accommodations in place for DB’s first day of school.

On behalf of DB, the family sought a number of provisional remedies. First, an order that his ABA provider be able to attend school with him on a full-time basis provided that he continues to be eligible for funding and remains in need of such support as determined by medical professionals. Second, in the event that provincial funding is discontinued, that the school provide and fund the equivalent service. Third, that if school is not willing to provide this level of support, an order that the school should fund private tuition in a specialized school. Compensation in the amount of $50,000 was also sought.

The family was successful in proving prima facie discrimination for the following reasons. Autism is a recognized category that is protected from discrimination. DB was a resident in the school district and has the right to access education services. The ISP placement did not provide detail on how the school was going to address DB’s needs related to communication and safety concerns.

 

Summary of Stage 1:

It is the responsibility of the applying party to establish the legal grounds of discrimination. If the legal grounds of discrimination are not found, the analysis is over and the case is unsuccessful. When the legal grounds for discrimination have been established, such as in the case examples included above, then the analysis asks whether there is a justification for the discriminatory outcome. In the second stage of the legal analysis, it will be the responding party’s responsibility to establish and provide evidence that there was a necessary reason for the discriminatory action. A finding of insufficient justification for the discriminatory action is necessary for there to be a breach of human rights.

 

Legal Analysis: Stage 2

The legal wording and test for stage 2, as found in Moore v British Columbia (Education), 2012 3 SCR, is outlined below.

Stage 2: Justification (Responsibility of the Respondent) (i.e., know what may be found to justify an otherwise discriminatory practice)
  1. On a finding of prima facie discrimination, the Respondent has the responsibility to prove the presence of a necessary justification for the discriminatory conduct or practice. If conduct or practice is not found to be justifiably proven by the Respondent, then discrimination will be found.

Below are the outcomes of the three cases previously discussed. In addition to the ordered remedy, each case identifies circumstances that have led to findings of discrimination or the absence of discrimination.

 

Case Study #1 (Moore v British Columbia (Education), 2012 3 SCR)

The case on behalf of J was successful where it was found that the school district breached J’s right of meaningful access to education.

Submissions by the school district were found to be insufficient to justify their decision to close the Diagnostic Centre. There were funding constraints caused by a reduction in the provincial budget. However, cuts were disproportionately made to special need programs. Discretionary programs with similar operating costs, such as the support of an outdoor campus teaching about environment and community, were kept. The court found that the school district did not assess how the needs of students like J would be impacted or consider how their needs would be alternatively addressed before making their decision. The school district’s chosen action was made despite acknowledging that some students require intensive supports to have meaningful access to education, The lack of timely consideration and evaluation of the program impacts of respective options led to a finding a discrimination.

By the time, this case was appealed to and heard by the Supreme Court of Canada in 2012, it had been seven years since the initial British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal decision in 2005. J was awarded reimbursement for his private school tuition up to and including grade 12, half of the expended transportation costs for traveling to and from private schools, and $10,000 in compensatory damages.

 

Case Study #2 (Jobb v Parkland School Division No. 70, 2017 AHRC 3)

The case on behalf of CJ was not successful despite the finding of prima facie discrimination.

Submissions by the school division were accepted to have shown ongoing assessment, adaptation, and modification to education program in response to CJ’s needs. It was established that the school division considered the Arrowsmith Method in response but did not proceed based on lack of clear empirical evidence supporting its use. Expert evidence given during trial supported the school division’s decision. The cost and time commitment for staff training to use the Arrowsmith Method would be extensive for an unproven benefit. The court said that the balance between the cost and benefit would create undue hardship for the school division. Therefore, the school division did not breach the code of human rights.

 

Case Study # 3 (DB v Toronto District School Board, 2021 HRTO 991)

The case on behalf of DB was successful where it was found that the school district breached DB’s right of meaningful access to education.

It was found that while it is not appropriate to hold school divisions to the standard of perfect accommodations, it is the responsibility of schools to specifically address and identify strategies and accommodations specific to the established needs of each individual child, and clearly discuss options and decision-making processes with parents. In the absence of a proposed reasonable accommodations in a timely manner, school divisions cannot rely on a justification of undue hardship. Subsequent actions and accommodation offered by the school division do not mitigate the established breach of human rights, but did have an impact on the appropriate remedy awarded. The requested remedies by DB were found to be outside the scope of what is reasonable to be provided by schools, and the breach to right of meaningful education was not dependent on the lack of requested accommodations.

DB was awarded $20,000 in compensatory damages. No provisional orders were made as requested remedies were outside of the educational mandate of the school division and the Tribunal declined to make determination on future possibilities. It was expected that if DB attended public school in the future, specific and reasonable accommodations would be made to ensure his right of meaningful access to education.

 

Summary of Stage 2:

It is the responsibility of the responding party to establish a justification for what would otherwise qualify as a discriminatory act. If the responding party is successful at this stage, then they will be found to not have breached human rights. If the responding party is unsuccessful at this stage, then it will be found that they have breached human rights. The cases included above show examples of circumstances and the reasoning for finding of both sufficient and insufficient justification in stage 2.

Where a breach of human rights is found, the courts have the authority to determine the appropriate remedies to right the situation. Remedies can take a variety of forms including monetary compensation and orders to undertake actions to correct the wrong. Remedies can be requested, but this is up to the discretion of the judge or judicial panel.

 

Summary of Legal Analysis Stages

Reflecting on your situation, it is important to consider what is alleged to be discriminatory and have evidence of its presence. Protection against discrimination is embedded in the Canadian constitution and is reinforced in provincial/territorial human rights codes. Education is accepted to be a service customarily available to the public, and the failure to provide meaningful access to education is a breach of human rights. However, there will be circumstances where, despite establishing the legal grounds of discrimination, a breach of human rights will not be found due to sufficient justification.

Human right cases require the finding of prima facie discrimination and the lack of a justification for discriminatory action to find a breach of human rights.

Each case is unique and will be decided through the facts and circumstances of the case. Similarities and differences with previous court cases can be used as support but are not determinative. If you have any doubts or questions, it is advised to consult a legal professional in your area to discuss your specific situation.

 

If each case is unique, how do I know where to start or what to ask for?

Review Your Provincial or Territorial Education Legislation

Provincial or territorial education legislation often have clauses that speak to the intended purpose of education in that jurisdiction. Each province and territory will have slight differences. The stated purposes of education are meant to be broad and will vary in implementation. The important thing to be aware of is whether your child is, or is not, receiving an intended benefit of education that their peers are due to their learning differences. See Appendix B for a table with some examples of clauses in provincial and territorial legislation that speaks to the intended purpose of education in your area.

 

Identify existing supports

Attached under Appendix C are reference sheets that identify some sources of information and supports in each province and territory.

 

Concluding Reflections

Every child in Canada has a right to education. More fully knowing about your child’s right to education and your provincial/territorial educational legislation, are important steps to asserting what your child needs. If you are concerned about what is being provided to your child at school, it may be helpful to talk with other parents, school/education ministry personnel or, if needed, obtain legal counsel. A helpful step may be to contact your local/regional Autism or Intellectual Disability Society or Support Organization as they may have relevant experience and information specific to your jurisdiction.

Some resources have been identified for each province and territory for use as a starting point as you advocate for your child. The appropriate resource sheet for each province and territory can be accessed on the AIDE Canada website.

 

Appendices

 

Appendix A - Table 1: Human Rights Legislation

 

Province/
Territory
Human Rights Legislation

Alberta
Human Rights Act, RSA 2000, c A-25.5 at Clause 4:
“No person shall (a) deny to any person or class of persons any goods, services, accommodation or facilities that are customarily available to the public, or (b) discriminate against any person or class of persons with respect to any goods, services, accommodation or facilities that are customarily available to the public, because of the race, religious beliefs, colour, gender, gender identity, gender expression, physical disability, mental disability, age, ancestry, place of origin, marital status, source of income, family status or sexual orientation of that person or class of persons or of any other person or class of persons.” ( https://www.qp.alberta.ca/documents/Acts/A25P5.pdf)
British
Columbia
Human Rights Code, RSBC 1996, c 210 at Clause 8(1):
“A person must not, without a bona fide and reasonable justification, (a) deny to a person or class of persons any accommodation, service or facility customarily available to the public, or (b) discriminate against a person or class of persons regarding any accommodation, service or facility customarily available to the public because of the Indigenous identity, race, colour, ancestry, place of origin, religion, marital status, family status, physical or mental disability, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or age of that person or class of persons.”( https://www.bclaws.gov.bc.ca/civix/document/id/complete/statreg/00_96210_01#section8)
ManitobaThe Human Rights Code, CCMS c H175 at Clauses 13(1) and 9(2)
No person shall discriminate with respect to any service, accommodation, facility, good, right, licence, benefit, program or privilege available or accessible to the public or to a section of the public, unless bona fide and reasonable cause exists for the discrimination” including on the basis of “(a) ancestry, including colour and perceived race; (b) nationality or national origin; (c) ethnic background or origin; (d) religion or creed, or religious belief, religious association or religious activity; (e) age; (f) sex, including sex-determined characteristics or circumstances, such as pregnancy, the possibility of pregnancy, or circumstances related to pregnancy; (g) gender identity; (h) sexual orientation; (i) marital or family status; (j) source of income; (k) political belief, political association or political activity; (l) physical or mental disability or related characteristics or circumstances, including reliance on a service animal, a wheelchair, or any other remedial appliance or device; and (m) social disadvantage.” ( https://web2.gov.mb.ca/laws/statutes/ccsm/h175e.php)
New BrunswickHuman Rights Act, RSNB 2011, c 171 at Clauses 6(1) and 2.1
No person, directly or indirectly, alone or with another, by himself, herself or itself or by the interposition of another, shall, based on a prohibited ground of discrimination, (a) deny to any person or class of persons any accommodation, services or facilities available to the public, or (b) discriminate against any person or class of persons with respect to any accommodation, services or facilities available to the public” on the basis of “(a) race, (b) colour, (c) national origin, (d) ancestry, (e) place of origin, (f) creed or religion, (g) age, (h) physical disability, (i) mental disability, (j) marital status, (k) family status, (l) sex, (m) sexual orientation, (n) gender identity or expression, (o) social condition, and (p) political belief or activity.”
(https://www.canlii.org/en/nb/laws/stat/rsnb-2011-c-171/latest/rsnb-2011-c-171.html)
Newfoundland and LabradorHuman Rights Code, RSNL 1990, c H-14 at Clause 6(1)-(2)
“(1) A person shall not deny to or discriminate against a person or class of persons with respect to accommodation, services, facilities or goods to which members of the public customarily have access or which are customarily offered to the public because of the race, religion, religious creed, political opinion, colour or ethnic, national or social origin, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, family status, age, physical disability or mental disability of that person or class of persons.  

“(2) Notwithstanding subsection (1), a limitation, specification, exclusion, denial or preference because of physical disability or mental disability shall be permitted if that limitation, specification, exclusion, denial or preference is based upon a good faith qualification.” ( https://www.canlii.org/en/nl/laws/stat/rsnl-1990-c-h-14/latest/rsnl-1990-c-h-14.html)
Northwest TerritoriesHuman Rights Act, SNWT 2002, c 18 at Clause 11(1)-(2)
“(1) No person shall, on the basis of a prohibited ground of discrimination and without a bona fide and reasonable justification, (a) deny to any individual or class of individuals any goods, services, accommodation or facilities that are customarily available to the public; or (b) discriminate against any individual or class of individuals with respect to any goods, services, accommodation or facilities that are customarily available to the public.”

(2) In order for the justification referred to in subsection (1) to be considered bona fide and reasonable, it must be established that accommodation of the needs of an individual or class of individuals affected would impose undue hardship on a person who would have to accommodate those needs”
(https://www.justice.gov.nt.ca/en/files/legislation/human-rights/human-rights.a.pdf)
Nova Scotia Human Rights Act, RSNS 1989, c 214, s 1 at Clause 5(1)
“No person shall in respect of (a) the provision of or access to services or facilities; (b) accommodation; (c) the purchase or sale of property; (d) employment; (e) volunteer public service; (f) a publication, broadcast or advertisement; (g) membership in a professional association, business or trade association, employers’ organization or employees’ organization, discriminate against an individual or class of individuals on account of (h) age; (i) race; (j) colour; (k) religion; (l) creed; (m) sex; (n) sexual orientation; (na) gender identity; (nb) gender expression; (o) physical disability or mental disability; (p) an irrational fear of contracting an illness or disease; (q) ethnic, national or aboriginal origin; (r) family status; (s) marital status; (t) source of income; (u) political belief, affiliation or activity; (v) that individual’s association with another individual or class of individuals having characteristics referred to in clauses (h) to (u).” ( https://nslegislature.ca/sites/default/files/legc/statutes/human%20rights.pdf)
Nunavut Human Rights Act, SNu 2003, c 12 at Clause 12(1)-(2)
12(1) “No person shall, on the basis of a prohibited ground of discrimination, unless done in good faith and with reasonable justification, (a) deny to any individual or class of individuals any goods, services or facilities that are customarily available to the public; (b) deny to any individual or class of individuals the ability to enter into any contract that is offered or held out to the public generally; c) discriminate against any individual or class of individuals with respect to any goods, services or facilities that are customarily available to the public; (d) discriminate against any individual or class of individuals with respect to the ability to enter into any contract that is offered or held out to the public generally; or (e) discriminate against any individual or class of individuals with respect to any term or condition of any contract that is offered or held out to the public generally.”

12(2) “When a practice referred to in subsection (1) results in discrimination, in order for the justification to be considered to be made in good faith and reasonable, it must be established that accommodation of the needs of an individual or class of individuals affected would impose undue hardship on a person who would have to accommodate those needs.”( https://www.canlii.org/en/nu/laws/stat/snu-2003-c-12/latest/)
Ontario Human Rights Code, RSO 1990, c H.19 at Clause 1:
“Every person has a right to equal treatment with respect to services, goods and facilities, without discrimination because of race, ancestry, place of origin, colour, ethnic origin, citizenship, creed, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, age, marital status, family status or disability.” ( https://www.ontario.ca/laws/statute/90h19)
Prince Edward Island Human Rights Act, RSPEI 1988, c H-12 at Clause 2(1) and 1(e)
2(1) No person shall discriminate (a) against any individual or class of individuals with respect to enjoyment of accommodation, services and facilities to which members of the public have access; or (b) with respect to the manner in which accommodations, services and facilities, to which members of the public have access, are provided to any individual or class of individuals. ( https://www.princeedwardisland.ca/sites/default/files/legislation/H-12%20-Human%20Rights%20Act.pdf)
Quebec Charter of Rights and Freedoms, CQLR c C-12, at Clauses 10 and 12
“(10) Every person has a right to full and equal recognition and exercise of his human rights and freedoms, without distinction, exclusion or preference based on race, colour, sex, gender identity or expression, pregnancy, sexual orientation, civil status, age except as provided by law, religion, political convictions, language, ethnic or national origin, social condition, a handicap or the use of any means to palliate a handicap. Discrimination exists where such a distinction, exclusion or preference has the effect of nullifying or impairing such right.”

“(12) No one may, through discrimination, refuse to make a juridical act concerning goods or services ordinarily offered to the public”
(https://www.legisquebec.gouv.qc.ca/en/document/cs/c-12)
Saskatchewan Human Rights Code, SS 2018, c S.24.2 at Clause 13
“Every person and every class of persons has the right to education in any school, college, university or other institution or place of learning, vocational training or apprenticeship without discrimination on the basis of a prohibited ground other than age. (2) Nothing in subsection (1) prevents a school, college, university or other institution or place of learning from following a restrictive policy with respect to enrolment on the basis of sex, creed, religion or disability if: (a) it enrols persons of a particular sex, creed or religion exclusively; (b) it is operated by a religious order or society; or (c) it enrols persons with a disability.”
(https://saskatchewanhumanrights.ca/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/Code2018.pdf)
Yukon Human Rights Act, RSY 2002, c 116 at Clause 9(a) and 7(a)-(m)
“No person shall discriminate (a) when offering or providing services, goods, or facilities to the public” on the basis of “(a) ancestry, including colour and race; (b) national origin; (c) ethnic or linguistic background or origin; (d) religion or creed, or religious belief, religious association, or religious activity; (e) age; (f) sex, including pregnancy, and pregnancy related conditions; (f.01) gender identity or gender expression; (g) sexual orientation; (h) physical or mental disability; (i) criminal charges or criminal record; (j) political belief, political association, or political activity; (k) marital or family status; (l) source of income; (m) actual or presumed association with other individuals or groups whose identity or membership is determined by any of the grounds listed in paragraphs (a) to (l).”
(https://laws.yukon.ca/cms/images/LEGISLATION/PRINCIPAL/2002/2002-0116/2002-0116.pdf)

 

Appendix B - Table 2: Educational Legislation

 

Province/
Territory
Educational Legislation

Alberta
Education Act, RSA 2012, c. E-03 at Preamble:
“WHEREAS the role of education is to develop engaged thinkers who think critically and creatively and ethical citizens who demonstrate respect, teamwork and democratic ideals and who work with an entrepreneurial spirit to face challenges with resiliency, adaptability, risk-taking and bold decision-making”( https://open.alberta.ca/publications/e00p3)
British
Columbia
School Act, RSBC 1996, c. 412 at Preamble
“WHEREAS the purpose of the British Columbia school system is to enable all learners to become literate, to develop their individual potential and to acquire the knowledge, skills and attitudes needed to contribute to a healthy, democratic and pluralistic society and a prosperous and sustainable economy”
(https://www.bclaws.gov.bc.ca/civix/document/id/complete/statreg/96412_00_multi)
ManitobaThe Public Schools Act, CCMS 1987, c.P250 at Preamble:
“WHEREAS the public school system should contribute to the development of students' talents and abilities … and the development of a fair, compassionate, healthy and prosperous society” ( https://web2.gov.mb.ca/laws/statutes/ccsm/p250e.php)
New BrunswickEducation Act, SNB 1997, c E-1.12 at Clause 1.1(a)
The purpose of this Act is to recognize (a) that the school system is founded on the principles of free public education, linguistic duality and the inclusion of all pupils.”
(https://www.canlii.org/en/nb/laws/stat/snb-1997-c-e-1.12/latest/snb-1997-c-e-1.12.html)
Newfoundland and LabradorSchools Act, SNL 1997, c S-12.2; Not mentioned in education legislation
(https://www.assembly.nl.ca/legislation/sr/statutes/s12-2.htm#3_)
Northwest TerritoriesEducation Act, SNWT 1995, c 28 at Preamble
“Believing that the focus of the education system must be students and on developing the physical, emotional, social, intellectual and spiritual aspects of their lives within a safe and positive learning environment” and “[r]ecognizing the importance to the people of the Northwest Territories of having access to an education program that meets the highest possible standards for education to ensure that people have the opportunity for continued personal development and achievement and to pursue post-secondary education, training and employment in Canada.” ( https://www.justice.gov.nt.ca/en/files/legislation/education/education.a.pdf)
Nova Scotia Education Act, 2018, c. 1, Sch. A, s. 1 at Clause 2:
“The purpose of this Act is to provide for a publicly funded school system whose primary mandate is to provide education programs and services for students to enable them to develop their potential and acquire the knowledge, skills and attitudes needed to contribute to a healthy society and a prosperous and sustainable economy.”
(https://nslegislature.ca/sites/default/files/legc/statutes/education.pdf)
Nunavut Nunavut:Education Act, SNu 2008, c 15 at Preamble
“Affirming that all children can learn, that learning is an individual process, and that diverse learning needs and abilities should be supported in an inclusive education system”
(https://www.canlii.org/en/nu/laws/stat/snu-2008-c-15/latest/snu-2008-c-15.html)  
Ontario Education Act, RSO 1990, c. E.2 at
“The purpose of education is to provide students with the opportunity to realize their potential and develop into highly skilled, knowledgeable, caring citizens who contribute to their society” ( https://www.ontario.ca/laws/statute/90e02)
Prince Edward Island Education Act, c E-.02 at Clause 3(1)
“The Minister shall (a) determine the goals, standards, guidelines, policies and priorities applicable to the provision of education in Prince Edward Island.”
(https://www.princeedwardisland.ca/sites/default/files/legislation/E-.02-Education%20Act.pdf)
Quebec Education Act, c I-13.3 at Clause 1
“Every person is entitled to the preschool education services and elementary and secondary school instructional services … within the meaning of the Act to secure handicapped persons in the exercise of their rights with a view to achieving social, school and workplace integration.”
(https://www.legisquebec.gouv.qc.ca/en/document/cs/I-13.3%20)
Saskatchewan Education Act, SS 1995, c E.02, Not mentioned in education legislation
(https://www.canlii.org/en/sk/laws/stat/ss-1995-c-e-0.2/latest/ss-1995-c-e-0.2.html)
Yukon Education Act, RSY 2002, c 61 at Preamble
“Recognizing that Yukon people agree that the goal of the Yukon education system is to work in co-operation with parents to develop the whole child including the intellectual, physical, social, emotional, cultural, and aesthetic potential of all students to the extent of their abilities so that they may become productive, responsible, and self-reliant members of society while leading personally rewarding lives in a changing world” and “[r]ecognizing that the Yukon education system will provide a right to an education appropriate to the individual learner based on equality of educational opportunity; prepare students for life and work in the Yukon, Canada, and the world; instill respect for family and community; and promote a love of learning”( https://www.canlii.org/en/yk/laws/stat/rsy-2002-c-61/latest/rsy-2002-c-61.html)

 

Appendix C: Provincial and Territorial Resource Reference Sheets

 

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