Monday, April 9, 2007

Who is Responsible for Your Children's Education?

The following is a brief overview of the roles of some of the individuals and groups responsible for publicly funded elementary and secondary education in Ontario.  The duties are legislated in the province's "Education Act", Chapter E.2, Revised Statutes of Ontario, 1990, as ammended.:

The Ontario Government and the Education Act

Education is a provincial and government responsibility in Canada.  In Ontario, education is governed principally by the "Education Act" and its regulations.  The "Education Act" and its regulations set out duties and responsibilities of the Minister of Education and the duties and responsibilities of school boards, school board supervisory officers, principals, teachers, parents and students.

the Minister of Education

School Boards





School Councils

Ontario College of Teachers

Education Quality and Accountability Office

These links are pretty comprehensive and include a number of duties for each section.  Though I admit I did not read them in depth, I saw a lot of requirements for the person who holds the title, and it seemed reasonable considering the number of children in a typical school on a typical day.  Under the title of Students, if you didn't look already, one will find the following:

Students are responsible for:

  • attending classes and taking examinations; and

  • exercising self-discipline and behaving courteously toward both their teachers and their fellow students.

Sounds reasonable to any homeschooling parent, right?  It is something we all strive for and, usually, accomplish fairly easily because we homeschool ... together.  It was when I read the role of the parent that I was literally stunned.  I scrolled down the page farther, hoping to find the missing or mis-laid requirements, but there were none.

Parents are responsible for:

  • ensuring their children attend school.  Generally speaking, attendance is compulsory between the ages of 6 and 16.

And that is all "they" wrote.  Parents of public school children need only be responsible to drop their children off at the "brick box".  They don't even need to feed them breakfast anymore if they don't want to (or can't?).  Just drive them there, or make them walk.

Might explain a LOT...

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