Sex, God and the public school

Last week the superintendent of Edmonton Public Schools put a halt to the teaching of sexual education classes by The Pregnancy Care Center, a Christian-based counseling service. At the center of this controversy is a teenager and her mother who objected to the one-sided approach this organization was taking in its presentation of contraception, family structures and lifestyle related topics. A complaint filed by the student and her mother with the Alberta Human Rights Commission alleges that the Pregnancy Care Center’s teachings were rife with inaccuracies and were steeped in religious ideology. This controversy does not stem from the fact that the Pregnancy Care Center’s approach to sex ed

Drugs in our schools Part II

Adults desperately want to see our young people thrive. We want to help equip them to meet whatever the future holds. One of the first steps we can take is to admit that there are areas where we have let our teens down. Then we must improve our performance and in doing so, offer them a better life. There are at least five groups that have, over the years, let things slip. With a minimal effort each group must make the decision to work together to improve the present and future lives of our young people. Parents and extended family: The structure of our families has changed over the years. Regardless, it is still possible to reconnect and forge strong bonds that will allow time for honest and

Drugs in our schools Part I

“Do you have drugs in your school?” This is the most repeated question I get when I am meeting with parents of prospective students. If the parent was not so earnest I would be tempted to act shocked. It would be easy to trot out the catch-all phrase that some schools have adopted and say smugly, “we have a zero tolerance policy for drugs in this school”. The sad truth is that there is not a high school in Canada that can honestly say that all their students are drug-free. From the very expensive private schools to the inner city alternative schools there are students who come to school under the influence of some mind-altering substance. In fact, a longitudinal study (Ontario Student Drug U

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