Province launching review of Peel District School Board after racism allegations
Education minister says 'discrimination and prejudice against students is unacceptable'
The Ontario government is launching a review of the Peel District School Board after allegations of anti-black racism within the board's schools.
Education Minister Stephen Lecce announced the move in a statement on Thursday, saying he will appoint reviewers to report on how the board could ensure governance that "promotes equity, increases accountability and transparency, and safeguards the success and well-being of students — irrespective of heritage, faith, colour of skin, orientation, or socio-economic status."
"Discrimination and prejudice against students is unacceptable," Lecce said.
A report from the board from 2016 found young black men reported experiencing bias and racism in Peel classrooms.
Lecce said allegations related to equity within the board have raised concerns related to anti-black racism and a lack of adherence to established governance, leadership, and human resources practices. Those concerns have been raised by students, families, the board's director of education and members of the broader community, he said.
"We expect our school leaders — trustees and senior administration — to provide effective, transparent, and accountable school board governance, to make sure that students of the board are well served and that they are learning in safe, welcoming and inclusive classrooms, and that board staff are working in an environment that respects and upholds principles of equity and human rights," Lecce said.