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A single system wouldn’t stop school closures in Ontario

If we want to move Ontario towards a single, secular public school system, let’s do it for the right reason.

The notion of too many school boards, with its proximate cousin of competition for students, is and has recently been raised as something to blame for why the Upper Canada District School Board has proposed a vast swath of school closures in the coming years.

Some thoughts that percolate when people start advocating for a single system in reaction to proposed school closures include:

“If we didn’t have publicly funded Catholic boards, we’d not have a vacant-pupil-place problem.”

“If we hadn’t provided French-language families with their own schools and school boards…”

“Money wasted on too many school boards is money that could be used to keep schools open.”

There are fatal flaws in each of those arguments, the first being there is a finite and fixed number of school-aged people in Ontario. That won’t change.

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