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‘Appalling’ website to stay online

The Ontario government does not plan to pull down a school-finderwebsite that at least one Toronto educator calls “an appalling way forfamilies to shop for schools that have ‘people like us’. ”

The Ontario government does not plan to pull down a school-finder website that at least one Toronto educator calls “an appalling way for families to shop for schools that have ‘people like us’. ”

Doug Jolliffe, head of the Toronto high school teachers’ uni-on, said yesterday he is discouraged the province does not intend to scrap its controversial “school information finder” website that posts a demographic snapshot of each school.

“If parents are actually picking a school on that basis, it becomes an exercise in self-streaming and you lose the mix we want in public education” said Jolliffe.

The Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation is one of 21 groups representing principals, teachers, school board officials and parents who called yesterday on the McGuinty government to take down the website until it consults with educators about what information should be included.

Education Minister Kathleen Wynne said she is sending out invitations “shortly” to a special roundtable discussion on the sensitive new website, but does not plan to take it down — in part because it is heavily used.

While Trustee John Campbell, chair of the Toronto District School Board, agrees the website includes information already available to the public, he said the background of students says little about how good a school is.

 
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