The Toronto Catholic District School Board (TCDSB) may soon try to pass amendments to its equity policy that allow religious doctrine to trump the Ontario Human Rights Code.
Among the eight amendments, only two passed at the last board meeting, on May 16. The meeting came to an end before trustees had time to vote on six other proposed amendments that appear to directly target queer students.
One proposed amendment states that the Catholic board’s denominational rights “take precedence over human rights protections.”
Another takes aim at gay-straight alliances (GSAs): “The board will approve only clubs which [sic] have goals that are not inconsistent with Catholic faith and the Catholic Church’s moral and doctrinal teachings.
Patrick Keyes, superintendent of education for the TCDSB, says many parents have a “real fear” that the Ministry of Education’s equity and inclusive education policy is “eroding Catholic values and traditions.”
“There’s some pretty polarizing views that are emerging, and that’s unfortunate,” Keyes says. “There’s a real fear, a fear their children will become part of this ‘gay agenda.’”
Although the TCDSB’s equity policy passed May 16, the board is now trying to make changes that make it easier for schools to continue to discriminate against queer students.
One amendment that died before it reached the boardroom states that whenever homosexuality is discussed in class, the teacher must reinforce the Catholic Catechism, which says that gay people are “intrinsically disordered.”
Fan-fucking-tastic. Fucking Catholic Church; causing serious, permanent damage to young GLBT students just because of religion.