Saturday, March 31, 2012

Budget cuts target education and the arts.

    The recent Ontario budget announcements have some disturbing, if not surprising targets: education and the arts.

    This article from The Star identifies some of the major cuts to the Toronto Public and Catholic and Peel Boards. It is very disturbing that special education and inner city schools seem to be affected the most, along with the loss of hundreds of classroom teachers and VPs.

    Of course the arts will be hit, with the Luminato festival getting the worst of it, as discussed in this article. The A.G.O., the R.O.M. and other Toronto art institutions will be affected as well.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Canadian history curriculum: first nations.

In this article in the Globe today, Paul Martin address the current problem with first nations education and revisits the accomplishments of the Kelowna accord that was "scrapped when the Conservatives came to power." These accomplishments would have focused on making first nations education a priority. This includes increased funding for reserve schools and a change in the way we teach Canadian history: to include the Metis, the first nations and the Inuit. The visual arts curriculum includes first nations work, both historical and contemporary; there is no way to talk about Canadian art without it, however, there is room to improve that curriculum as well with more specific first nations content and classroom resources for teachers.