Letter to the Editor – Royal Commission on Learning


Dear Editor,

I would sincerely welcome a Royal Commission on Learning as recommended by the Upper Canada District School Board, reported by Hilary Thomson, NG Times, April 21, 2021. I have different reasons.  I have very possibly complained more about education offered by the UCDSB than any other parent.

I made a presentation to a previous Royal Commission on Learning. I represented the Learning Disabilities Association of Kemptville and District (by definition these students have normal intelligence and have communication issues) on the UCDSB’s Special Education Advisory Committee, one of then only two Ministry of Education mandated committees. As such, I wrote a dissenting opinion about special education offered by UCDSB.  I have met with Regional Superintendents of Education at the Ministry office in Ottawa. I have written to numerous provincial governments and ministers of education.  I watched a Member of the Provincial Parliament, on TV, read information I submitted to him.

I have four children identified as needing special education by the UCDSB, and one grandchild in the process of identification. I have paid for two of these children to attend private schools, and it is my opinion that one child learned more at Community Christian School in Metcalfe, Ontario, in one grade seven year than in all previous education with the UCDSB. The UCDSB disagrees.  I have been threatened with legal action by the UCDSB, and I have been told to sign contract agreements or my child would lose all special education assistance. Assistance which was far less than recommended by the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario. I won an Identification, Placement and Review Committee decision against the UCDSB, and had the privilege of walking down a hall with principals sitting on both sides to meet with the then Director of Education who was lounging on his couch.

In my opinion, the UCDSB seems to believe that students can be taught/educated by sending them to Essential Programs (essential for what?) in High School instead of helping them learn in elementary school as per my interpretation of Ministry of Education legislation.  All this has significantly impacted my health and the health of my family.

Are there any reporters out there who are interested in a Royal Commission on Learning? Of course, you will need insurance against UCDSB retaliation. This would also give a reprieve in the Kemptville news from endless concerns about the building of a new prison in town, and would probably prevent many UCDSB students from ending up on welfare or in jail.

Pamela Gordon


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