The bedrock for developing a respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms is universal public education.
However, since 1977, successive governments in British Columbia have sought to create a two-tiered education system through a public subsidy to independent schools. A majority of these schools are faith based, while others charge prohibitive tuitions. These barriers segregate society along sectarian and socio-economic lines. Further, the Government has a duty to protect the rights of children, recognized under the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, in religious independent schools. Humanists have also welcomed innovative and experimental forms of education.
Under our call for an end to public funding of independent schools, the British Columbia Humanist Association:
- Supports the principle of public funds for public education;
- Opposes public funding going to faith-based education;
- Joins calls for the phase out of public funding to all independent schools;
- Supports greater innovation within the public education system; and
- Calls on the Government of BC to ensure:
- the religious neutrality of the Office of the Inspector of Independent
- all independent schools meet comparable curriculum standards as public
- students in independent schools are free from discrimination and their
freedoms of religion and expression are protected.
Do you support our work? Donate to the Public Funds for Public Education campaign.
Join our call for public funds for public education
Yesterday the Government of Canada released its 2021 budget and today the Government of BC released its budget.
The BC Humanist Association is celebrating investments in childcare, reconciliation and efforts to combat systemic racism.
As the Government of British Columbia rolls out its Education Restart Plan, some students and parents are considering their own options for their return to school in September. A popular option is some form of homeschooling. Parents in BC have three main options for homeschooling their children: Enrolling in a...
Executive Summary Proponents of British Columbia’s (BC) private education funding model have claimed that private schools provide students with an academic advantage over their public school peers. By comparing the performance of graduates of BC private and public schools at the University of British Columbia (UBC), we can test this...
The BC Humanist Association is applauding a step by the Ministry of Education to reduce public support for online private schooling. The Government of BC funds in-person private schools up to 50% of the per-student amount of neighbouring public schools; however, online distributed learning (DL) programs run by private schools...
More than half of British Columbians (51%) strongly oppose "providing taxpayer funds to faith-based private schools that include religious teachings in their curriculum" according to a new poll from Insights West. A total of 69% were opposed with 18% somewhat opposed.
76 (1) All schools and Provincial schools must be conducted on strictly secular and non-sectarian principles. (2) The highest morality must be inculcated, but no religious dogma or creed is to be taught in a school or Provincial school. Since 1876, BC has required schools "be conducted upon strictly secular and non-sectarian principles."...
Stephanie Vande Kraats resigned as a teacher at Surrey Christian School after administrators allegedly told her that her contract would not be renewed because she was living with a man she wasn't married to, according to a story from CBC's Go Public. I didn't want to continue in a place...
By Tonya D. Callaghan, University of Calgary Recently, a Calgary woman filed two human rights complaints with the Alberta Human Rights Commission. The employee, Barb Hamilton, says she was pushed out the Calgary Catholic School District (CCSD) because of her sexuality and was refused employment on the grounds of marital...
In the past couple days it has come out that anyone in a same-sex relationship is formally barred from working at a Catholic school in Calgary. Further, in a number of human rights complaints, teachers have alleged anti-LGBTQ2+ discrimination by Catholic school boards in Alberta. While Alberta's Catholic schools are...
At its most recent board meeting, the BC Humanist Association unanimously agreed to join hundreds of organizations in endorsing the $10aDay Child Care Plan. The plan is an initiative of the Coalition of Child Care Advocates of BC. By making quality child care affordable and accessible, the plan sets a...
See more Public Education posts.