Every day, staff across TDSB support student achievement and well-being, and work hard to create inclusive spaces where every student feels valued, seen and empowered.
As you may be aware, there are demonstrations scheduled to take place in our city this week which, in some past cases, have fostered inflammatory, transphobic, and hateful behaviours against members of 2SLGBTQ+ communities.
Ahead of these planned demonstrations, we want to make it unequivocally clear that TDSB stands with our trans, Two-Spirit and non-binary students, staff and families, and we support everyone’s human rights and expression of gender.
Harassment, discrimination and hate have no place in TDSB. In our schools, we do not tell students who they should be, but welcome them as they are. We do this by focusing on their academic learning and fostering feelings of belonging as expected in the Ontario curriculum and the Ontario Human Rights Code.
“The Ontario Human Rights Code (Code) protects everyone from discrimination and harassment based on numerous grounds, including disability, gender identity and expression, race, and religion. In schools, following the Code means that every student has the right to a learning environment free from discrimination, harassment, or other expressions of hatred — an environment where everyone feels safe to learn, thrive, and be themselves”. – (OHRC, Statement on Anti-Hate, June 2023).
We know that news of the planned demonstrations is upsetting, and students, staff and families may require additional support. TDSB’s social work department is ready to support where needed. Students and/or families should reach out to their school Principal or another staff member at their school to speak with someone about the planned demonstrations, and/or the impact of transphobia and homophobia more broadly. Staff should speak with their principal/manager or reach out directly to the Board’s Employee and Family Assistance Program.
You can read more about the work we’re doing and the actions we’re taking to interrupt and confront discrimination and hate in our schools and workplaces in TDSB’s Student Learning Strategy for Combatting Hate and Racism and Update on TDSB’s Anti-Hate and Anti-Racism Strategy
In support of 2SLGBTQ+ communities, TDSB will be raising the Pride flag at the TDSB Education Centre and administrative sites today and for the remainder of the week.
Director of Education