Education

04 Sep 2014 Loyola v. Quebec: ARPA Canada defends parental rights at the Supreme Court of Canada

Update: March 19, 2015: The Supreme Court released their decision this morning and they have ruled in favour of Loyola this morning. Read more here. On March 24, 2014, ARPA Canada appeared in the Supreme Court of Canada, leading a coalition of Christian schools from across the country, in order to defend Christian education from the continual encroachment of the State. The Loyola case will have a greater impact on a parent's authority in raising their child in the fear of the Lord than any other case in...

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04 Sep 2014 Trinity Western University: Taking a stand to defend a Christian law school

Update (December 16, 2015): Good news! The chief justice of the Ontario Court of Appeal has granted intervenor status to ARPA Canada to make arguments on behalf of the Reformed community in the TWU matter. Stay tuned for a date and a future decision that hopefully will overturn the lower court decision. May God bless the work of the intervenors defending freedom and liberty. Update (December 10, 2015): Another victory! We are very thankful to report that the chief justice of British Columbia has ruled in favour of TWU, quashing...

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25 Aug 2014 Understanding our Educational Freedom

The following article, "Understanding, appreciating, protecting & using our Educational Freedom" was originally published in the Reformed Perspective magazine. It has been included here as a reference item for our readers. You can download a PDF of the updated version, linked at the bottom of the text if you wish to print a copy. Understanding, appreciating, protecting & using our EDUCATIONAL FREEDOM By André Schutten In most of the Western world we are free to educate our children as we wish. We can raise them up to know the ways of the Lord. Do we understand how blessed we are because of this reality? Let's consider, then, this blessing and examine how our Reformed schools, teachers, and parents are crucial in defending this freedom. Recent legal challenges on the education front should serve as reminders that we need to stay vigilant and jealously guard the freedom we have to raise up our children to know and serve the Lord.
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20 Aug 2014 School: Who Should Rule?

The following article, "School: Who Should Rule" was originally published in the Reformed Perspective magazine. It has been included here as a reference item for our readers. You can download a PDF of the updated version, linked at the bottom of the text if you wish to print a copy. What do Reformed church orders say about church-run schools vs. parent-run schools? By Mark Penninga Late last year I was privileged to join my colleague André Schutten in making presentations to Reformed churches and schools across Canada. We were talking about the political and legal challenges we are seeing against parental authority in education. Our focus was the Loyola Supreme Court case, in which the province of Quebec is demanding that all schools and home schools set aside their worldview, and instead teach about religion and ethics from an explicitly secular perspective. In preparing for these presentations I did some research into what Reformed Christians believe about who is primarily responsible for the education of children. I assumed that there was a common perspective about parental authority, in light of covenant theology. I was wrong.
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21 Jul 2014 Without autonomous families, freedom falters

It’s frightening that a provision protecting a parent’s authority over their child’s education would cause so much controversy in Alberta, the land of the free. And it’s ironic that when the shoe is on the other foot, suddenly parental rights are all the rage. Last month, PC leadership contenders landed in hot water over their support of section 11.1 of the Alberta Human Rights Act. This 2009 amendment requires educators to inform parents with a written letter when their children will be taught about controversial issues including religion and sexual ethics. This section simply affirms the common law right and the constitutional freedom of parents to raise their children according to their own worldview. This freedom and right is also protected under the Charter’s section 2(a) and 2(b) provisions (freedom of religion and freedom of expression) and under section 7 (right to liberty).
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08 Jul 2014 Calgary Herald: Independent School Funding

UPDATE: Link to video of debate is now available. Watch it here. Should the Alberta government cease funding for private and chartered schools? That was the question posed at a recent debate in Tomkins Park, Calgary.  The Calgary Herald has published a piece by McKenzie Hahn who attended and you can read her piece online. Ms. Hahn explains that as a graduate of the public education system and recognizing that she may one day need to make decisions regarding education, she decided to attend the public debate between Cardus' Ray...

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13 Jun 2014 ARPA in Vancouver Sun: All lawyers abide by religious covenant

Mark Penninga, Vancouver Sun, June 12, 2014: A strong majority of the B.C. lawyers who voted Wednesday made it clear Trinity Western University's law school grads should not be recognized by the Law Society of B.C. because of the school's Community Covenant. This vote should make our province pause and consider what this means for the broader institution of law and order. If pledging to uphold a Christian understanding of sexuality or marriage makes one unworthy of practicing law, then all lawyers should be unworthy of practicing law because they have also bound themselves to a community covenant which is based on religious convictions and principles. To practice law, lawyers must take the barristers and solicitors' oath. In British Columbia, they swear to diligently, faithfully, and to the best of their ability "uphold the rule of law and the rights and freedoms of all persons according to the laws of Canada and the province of British Columbia."
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21 May 2014 ARPA in Vancouver Sun: Liberal/NDP abortion policy and TWU

Mark Penninga, Vancouver Sun, May 20 2014: Federal Liberal leader Justin Trudeau announced last week, just before the National March for Life, that candidates for the next election for the Liberal Party will be required to be pro-abortion. This is clearly discriminatory. It excludes at least half of the population that for religious or other reasons does not support the status quo of zero restrictions on abortion. I joined the thousands of Canadians who marched for Life in Ottawa on Thursday. Many of those who are pro-life are Christians. There was...

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12 May 2014 Parental Rights in Education Defense Fund

Parental rights is an issue many of us care about. ARPA Canada spent an entire tour last fall speaking about parental rights in relation to the education of their children. Some ARPA volunteers in Southern Ontario are involved in the Parental Rights in Education Defense Fund. They are hosting a fundraising dinner featuring Ezra Levant in two weeks to raise funds for another case in which a father wants to be informed about what his children are being taught. So far, the public school board has been denying him that...

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26 Mar 2014 ARPA makes submission to the Law Society of Upper Canada

This morning, ARPA's legal counsel sent a written submission to the policy secretariat at the Law Society of Upper Canada (LSUC). You can read the submission attached to this article below. The LSUC is the body that regulates and licenses all lawyers in the province of Ontario. They are considering whether or not to accredit Trinity Western University's (TWU) School of Law despite the affirmation of other government bodies that have already approved the school. The problem is that there are some activist lawyers out there who think that a Christian who gets his or her legal education at a Christian law school cannot be a good lawyer because they "discriminate" due to the Christian view on marriage. (photo credit) The sad thing is, the LSUC is asking and investigating this issue despite the conclusions of two professional legal opinions, the findings (after extensive investigation) of two government decision-making bodies, and the ruling of an 8-1 majority of the Supreme Court of Canada in a case barely a decade old with virtually the exact same fact scenario. By re-evaluating TWU, the LSUC demonstrates a bias amounting to a religious inquisition. There is no doubt in my mind that if this were about an orthodox Jewish, Muslim, atheist, Black, feminist, LGBTQ or any other private law school formed along associational lines, there would be no such "due diligence". This double standard is evidence for not only why we should accredit TWU, but also why we need to accredit TWU.
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