Examining Competing Claims in the Dialogue over Sex Education in Ontario: Women, Rights, and Religion
Journal: Religious Studies and Theology
This article examines the recent debate over sex education in Ontario through the lenses of women, rights, and religion. It seeks to problematize all three lenses as well as to show how the three categories intersect. It endeavours to expose some of the power dynamics in the debate. It suggests that better ways need to be found to interrogate religion in the public sphere than either simply accepting or condemning its presence.
Author: Pamela Dickey Young
Ali-Faisal, Sobia. n.d. “Writing about Health, Culture, Society and Psychology.” https://sobiaalifaisal.com/
―――. 2015. “Denying Children Sexual Education is Risky.” September 15. https://sobiaalifaisal.com/page/2/
Beyer, Peter and Rubina Ramji. 2013. Growing Up Canadian: Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists. Montreal: McGill-Queen’s Press.
Campaign Life Coalition. 2015. “Ontario’s Radical Sex Ed Curriculum.” http://www.campaignlifecoalition.com/index.php?p=Sex_Ed_Curriculum
Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. 2015a. “Ontario Sex-ed Dispute: Why One Mother Will Keep Her Kids Home.” September 9. http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/sex-education-ontario-curriculum-1.3220454
―――. 2015b. “Ontario Sex-ed Protest ‘Unlike Anything I’ve ever Experienced,’ Principal Says.” October 1. http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/ontario-sex-ed-protest-1.3251799
Chanika, Jeewan. 2015. “A Muslim Principal on Ontario’s New Sex Ed Curriculum.” February 28. Muslim Link. http://muslimlink.ca/in-focus/opinions/newsexedcurriculum
Collins, Dana, Sylvanna Falcon, Sharmila Lodhia and Molly Talcott. 2010. “New Directions in Feminism and Human Rights.” International Feminist Journal of Politics 12(3/4): 298‒319. https://doi.org/10.1080/14616742.2010.513096
Csanady, Ashley. 2016. “One in Six Ontario Parents Considered Pulling Kids from School over New Sex-ed Curriculum: Poll.” National Post. http://news.nationalpost.com/news/canada/canadian-politics/one-in-six-ontario-parents-considered-pulling-kids-from-school-over-new-sex-ed-curriculum-poll June 3 2016
Environics. 2016. Survey of Muslims in Canada. http://www.environicsinstitute.
Evangelical Fellowship of Canada. 2015. “Ontario’s Revised Health and Physical Education Curriculum.” http://www.evangelicalfellowship.ca/ef.ca/si/revised-ontario-curriculum-letter-writing
Hune-Brown, Nicholas. 2015. “The Sex Ed Revolution: A Portrait of the Powerful Political Bloc that’s Waging War on Queen’s Park.” TorontoLife. September 3. http://torontolife.com/city/ontario-sex-ed-revolution/
Institute for Canadian Values. 2015. “Stop the Wynne-Levin Sex-Ed Program.” http://canadianvalues.ca/ICV/stopcorruptingchildren/?page_id=2452
Institute for Catholic Education. 2015. A Parent’s Guide to Understanding Family Life Education in Catholic Schools (and How it Connects with Ontario’s Revised Health and Physical Education Curriculum). http://iceont.ca/resources/parent-resources/health-physical-education-resources/
Islam, Sanam. 2015. “Breaking the Taboo: Why a Calgary Therapist is Teaching Muslims to Talk about Sexual Health.” November 20. Muslim Link. http://muslimlink.ca/in-focus/breaking-the-taboo-muslims-sexual-health
Mahmoud, Saba. 2006. “Agency, Performativity and the Feminist Subject.” In Bodily Citations: Religion and Judith Butler, edited by Ellen T. Armour and Susan M. St. Ville, 177‒217. New York: Columbia.
Marfatia, Farrah. 2015. How to Talk to your Muslim Child About Topics in the Ontario Ministry of Education’s Health Education Curriculum. self-published.
McKay, Alexander, E. Sandra Byers, Susan D. Voyer, Terry P. Humphreys, and Chris Markham. 2014. “Ontario Parents’ Opinions and Attitudes towards Sexual Health Education in the Schools.” Canadian Journal of Human Sexuality 23(3): 159‒167. https://doi.org/10.3138/cjhs.23.3-A1
Muslims for Ontario’s Health and Physical Education Curriculum. https://www.facebook.com/MuslimsforOntariosNewHealthPhysCurriculum
National Post View. 2015. “The Parents’ Sex Ed Rebellion.” October 6. http://news.nationalpost.com/full-comment/national-post-view-the-parents-rebellion-to-sex-ed
Ontario. Ministry of Education. 2013. Policy/Program Memorandum No. 11. April 23. https://edu.gov.on.ca/extra/eng/ppm/119.pdf
Ontario, 2015a. The Ontario Curriculum, Grades 1‒8; Health and Physical Education. http://www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/curriculum/elementary/health1to8.pdf
Ontario, 2015b. The Ontario Curriculum, Grades 9‒12, Health and Physical Education. http://www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/curriculum/secondary/health-9to12.pdf
Page, Sarah-Jane, Andrew Kam-Tuck Yip and Michael Keenan. 2012. “Risk and the Imagined Future: Young Adults Negotiating Religious and Sexual Identities.” In The Ashgate Research Companion to Contemporary Religion and Sexuality, edited by Stephen Hunt and Andrew K. T. Yip, 255‒270. Farnham: Ashgate.
Parents Against Ontario Sex-Ed Curriculum. https://www.facebook.com/Parents-Against-Ontario-Sex-Ed-Curriculum-1620174608211662/home
Parents as First Educators. https://www.facebook.com/pafe4/
Rushowy, Kristin. 2016. “Toronto School Offers Sanitized Sex-ed amid Parent Concern.” Toronto Star. May 13. www.thestar.com/yourtoronto/education/2016/05/13/toronto-school-offers-sanitized-sex-ed-amid-parent-concern.html
Sanjakdar, Fida. 2012. “Probing the Boundaries: How Religion and Sexuality are Negotiated within Islamic Educational Institutions.” In The Ashgate Research Companion to Contemporary Religion and Sexuality, edited by Stephen Hunt and Andrew K. T. Yip, 157–172. Farnham: Ashgate.
Selley, Chris. 2015. “Muslim Community Taking the Lead in Latest Rounds of Ontario Sex-Education Protests.” National Post. May 5. http://news.nationalpost.com/news/canada/muslim-community-taking-the-lead-in-latest-round-of-ontario-sex-education-protests
Sharma, Jaya. 2006. “Reflections on the Language of Rights from a Queer Perspective.” IDS Bulletin 37(5): 52–57. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1759-5436.2006.tb00302.x
Shipley, Heather. 2015a. “Challenging Identity Construct: The Debate Over the Sex Education Curriculum in Ontario.” In Religion and Sexuality: Diversity and the Limits of Tolerance, edited by Pamela Dickey Young, Heather Shipley and Tracy Trothen, 97–118. Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press.
———. 2015b. “The Spaces In-Between: Religion, Sexual Identity, Media and Education in Ontario.” In Issues in Religion and Education: Whose Religion? Edited by Lori Beaman and Leo Van Arragon, 211–230. Leiden: Brill.
Smith, Andrea. 2008. “Human Rights and Social-Justice Organizing in the United States.” Radical History Review 101: 211–219. https://doi.org/10.1215/01636545-2007-047
Stanger-Hall, Kathrin F. and David W. Hall. 2011. “Abstinence-Only Education and Teen Pregnancy Rates: Why We Need Comprehensive Sex Education in the U.S.” PLoS ONE 6(10): 1–11. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0024658
Tabatabaie, Alireza . 2015. “Childhood and Adolescent Sexuality, Islam, and Problematics of Sex Education: A Call for Re-examination.” Sex Education 15(3): 276–288. https://doi.org/10.1080/14681811.2015.1005836
Thorncliffe Parents Association. https://www.facebook.com/thorncliffeparents/info/?entry_point=page_nav_about_item&tab=page_info
Toronto District School Board. 1999. “Equity Foundation Statement.” http://www2.tdsb.on.ca/ppf/uploads/files/live/102/200.pdf
Toronto District School Board. 2011. “Guidelines and Procedures for Religious Accommodation.” http://www.tdsb.on.ca/Portals/0/HighSchool/docs/Guidelines%20and%20Procedures%20for%20Religious%20Accommodations.pdf
Toronto District School Board. 2015. “Revised Health and Physical Education Curriculum.” http://www.tdsb.on.ca/highschool/yourschoolday/curriculum/healthandphysicaleducation/revisedhealthandphysicaleducationcurriculum.aspx
TVO. 2015. “Sex Ed and Islam.” http://tvo.org/video/programs/the-agenda-withsteve-paikin/sex-ed-and-islamVox Cantoris. 2015. “Ontario’s Lesbian Premier’s Perverted Sex Education Agenda.” http://voxcantor.blogspot.ca/2015/01/ontarios-lesbian-premiers-perverted-sex.html
Warmington, Joe. 2015. “New Sex Ed curriculum under fire.” Toronto Sun. February 3. http://www.torontosun.com/2015/02/23/ new-sex-ed-curriculum-under-fire
Wiesner, Merry E. 2000. Christianity and Sexuality in the Early Modern World: Regulating Desire, Reforming Practice. New York: Routledge.
Young, Pamela Dickey. 2012. Religion, Sex and Politics: Christian Churches and Same-Sex Marriage in Canada. Winnipeg: Fernwood.
Young, Pamela Dickey. Forthcoming. “Informal Sex Education: Forces that Shape Youth Identities and Practices. In Critical Pedagogy, Sexuality Education and Young People edited by Andrew Yip and Fida Sanjakdar. New York: Peter Lang.
Zaheer, Javd, 2015. “People Determined to Fight for Rights, Oppose and Reject Bad Policies and Leaders.” May 10. Hamari Web. http://www.hamariweb.com/articles/article.aspx?id=60625
Zain Al-Dien, Muhammad M. 2010. “Perceptions of Sex Education among Muslim
Adolescents in Canada.” Journal of Muslim Minority Affairs 30(3): 391–407. https://doi.org/10.1080/13602004.2010.515823