February 11th, 2021
The Honourable Stephen Lecce
Minister of Education
5th Floor, 438 University Ave.
Toronto, ON. M7A 2A5
Dear Minister Lecce,
I am writing to request a meeting with you to discuss the incorporation of equity and inclusion topics into the education curriculum for both primary and secondary schools.
Obviously, I understand that your priority at the moment is managing the COVID-19 pandemic and creating a safe learning environment for children and teachers in Ontario and I encourage you in this essential work. However, I also know that the events of the past year have clearly demonstrated the prevalence of racial injustice in Ontario’s health, education, and justice systems. The current pandemic has only served to highlight once again the systemic issues that disproportionately lead to negative health outcomes for racialized communities in Ontario.
Education is an essential component of the fight against such systemic injustices. As you know, the Education Act itself describes the purpose of education in Ontario as helping students “to realize their potential and develop into highly skilled, knowledgeable, caring citizens who contribute to their society.” Only an education curriculum that addresses the reality of systemic injustice will be able to ensure that this objective is realized.
The past year has made it abundantly clear that racial equity and inclusion are important to the people of Ontario and that significant public support exists for concrete, practical measures to address systemic issues in this province. As a result, your government has a lot to gain from taking practical steps forward now to better incorporate equity and inclusion topics into the education curriculum. Updating the curriculum is an initiative that all Ontarians can support as a means to ensuring that today’s systemic injustices are not perpetuated for generations to come.
It is in this light that I would like to sit down with you to discuss the work that you and your ministry are already doing on this front and how I may be able to support you in it. I look forward to talking further with you about this issue.
Thank you again for your consideration and I look forward to hearing from you soon.
Lucille Collard, MPP Ottawa-Vanier