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Ontario must not gamble with another rushed plan. It was only a year ago that the Conservatives announced, “An ill-conceived autism funding reboot that threw 23,000 autistic children into chaos.”
“We lost a year — families have gone through an incredible amount of pain and anxiety and suffering,” said Laura Kirby-McIntosh, president of the Ontario Autism Coalition.
At the May 19 Barrie-Innisfil education town hall, parents, educators and education critic MPP Marit Stiles flagged dozens of concerns for the Ford government to contemplate as they plan to reopen our schools.
How will class sizes be reduced to allow for safe physical-distancing measures?
If a teacher or student contracts COVID, what will be the protocol?
How will students who require one-on-one support be accommodated?
Will students and teachers be provided PPE and sanitizer?
When will the boards receive funding levels to plan appropriately for September.
In partnership with our medical officers, educators and parents can help develop and put in place the solutions needed for a safe opening.
Unfortunately, over the past academic school year, Minister Lecce and Premier Ford have spent endless hours on commercials and tweets railing against educators, trying to undermine their good standing in our communities. Parents have been caught in the crossfire. This has led to an erosion of trust between educators, parents and the government.
Without trust, without a respectful process to provide input that is actually taken into consideration, and without real collaboration with front-line workers, the Ford government risks a dangerous and costly nightmare come September
Everyone wants our kids to be safe. Front-line workers in education hope that this government will work with them to build back the trust that has been lost over the last year of contract negotiations and disputes in order to keep our children and their families safe.
We will not accept anything less than the best for our children.