School board attaches non-compete clause to building sale

Public board in Ontario refused to sell a school it closed to a private school to curtail competition for students

School board attaches non-compete clause to building saleWho does the government compete with? Is a public school a sacred building? A recent surplus building sale raises those questions. Near Brockville, Ont., the local public school board has sold the Wolford elementary school that it closed in 2018. The building was surplus, no other government had a use for it, so the school…

Public school monopoly is a disservice to education

A modern, diverse system that meets the needs of a pluralistic society can deliver education in different ways

Public school monopoly is a disservice to educationThe Liberals are making support for public education a litmus test in the federal election campaign. The Liberals aren’t satisfied that Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer has dropped the promised he made during the Tory leadership race in 2017 to provide tax credits to parents for costs of non-government-provided education. Various Liberals have spoken out. Katie…

B.C. education system performs well while holding line on spending

B.C. financially supports parents who choose independent schools with per-student grants of up to 50%

B.C. education system performs well while holding line on spendingWhile other Canadian provinces experience decline in student performance despite increased education spending, in the opposite is true for British Columbia. The province’s kindergarten-to-Grade-12 education system is performing well while keeping spending on public education relatively low. Other provinces should look to B.C. to see that student achievement doesn’t require a large increase in spending.…

Independent schools should be encouraged, funded in Ontario

A survey shows that independent school graduates are much more likely to work for the common good. How can that be bad?

Independent schools should be encouraged, funded in OntarioBy Doug Sikkema and Dr. Beth Green Cardus More than six per cent of children in Ontario are enrolled in independent (non-public) schools. In the 1960s, such independent school enrolments made up a mere 1.8 per cent of the student population. Six per cent might not seem like much, but the long-term trend in Ontario…

Academic results another reason to support school choice

In British Columbia, independent schools outperform public schools in academic achievement

Academic results another reason to support school choiceFor some students, the end of the school year means saying goodbye to one school and hello to another, so it’s an opportune moment for parents to reflect on school choice. In British Columbia, independent schools – operating outside the public system – provide the bulk of educational choice. There are many benefits to the…

Ontario can learn from B.C.’s education model

Independent schools deliver higher student test scores at lower costs to taxpayers

Ontario can learn from B.C.’s education modelWith another school year ending, it’s a good time to reflect on kindergarten-to-Grade-12 education in Ontario. As the second largest area of provincial expenditure, it can’t escape review as incoming premier Doug Ford’s new government plans to rein in spending. Fortunately one only needs to look to British Columbia for an example of how independent…

Alberta can learn from B.C.’s independent school success

Independent schools provide increased choice and better outcomes for students than the current model Alberta employs

Alberta can learn from B.C.’s independent school successAs another school year ends, it’s a good time to reflect on kindergarten-go-Grade-12 education in Alberta, including independent schools and how they fit into the overall model of education. Although more and more families are choosing independent schools, there are many who view these schools with suspicion and would prefer a more homogenized system. However,…

Real education reform long overdue in Ontario

But the Progressive Conservatives promise nothing more than a disappointing package that ensures education status quo in the province

Real education reform long overdue in OntarioBy Angela MacLeod and Jason Clemens The Fraser Institute The Ontario Progressive Conservatives’ recently-released election platform shows they’ve opted for the status quo in kindergarten-to-Grade-12 education. That’s unfortunate, because the province’s education system is in dire need of reform. The platform the Opposition PCs offered as they prepare for next year’s provincial election contains almost no substantive…

Alberta’s independent schools provide needed choice, value

Despite activist claims, most independent schools in Alberta are not bastions for the rich, but they do fill a critical education niche

Alberta’s independent schools provide needed choice, valueBy Angela MacLeod and Sasha Parvani The Fraser Institute In Alberta, school choice is under attack. Alongside several teacher unions and associations, groups such as Public Interest Alberta and SOS Alberta want to reduce the choices available for families outside the public education system by pressuring the government to eliminate provincial funding for independent schools. SOS…

What Betsy DeVos could learn about school choice from Ontario

Unfortunately, the U.S. Education Secretary would have to visit the past to find truly innovative approaches to school choice

What Betsy DeVos could learn about school choice from OntarioBetsy DeVos, Donald Trump’s Education Secretary, is charged with promoting school choice. She was about to visit Ontario recently but her visit was cancelled. One cannot but wonder if DeVos’ advisors learned of how Premier Kathleen Wynne’s Liberal party clawed its way to power by smothering a truly innovative school choice program in its cradle.…

Kudos to Toronto, but independent schools still face discrimination

Subjecting parents choosing such schools for their children to extra costs is discriminatory

Kudos to Toronto, but independent schools still face discriminationBy Derek J. Allison Deani Neven Van Pelt and Beth Green Cardus You could call it a step forward in fairness for Canadians who send their kids to independent schools. The Toronto Board of Health recently recommended the extension of its student nutrition programs to qualified independent schools. That means more than 300 independent schools…

Toppling the misperceptions about home-schooling

Home-schooling successes show that parents and kids can be far more responsible for decisions about their education than imagined

Toppling the misperceptions about home-schoolingBy Deani Van Pelt and Beth Green Cardus Back-to-school means different things for many of Canada’s five million school-age children. For an increasing share of students in almost every province, it means something other than attending a neighbourhood public school. Home-schooling, while still small in overall uptake – Manitoba has the highest share at 1.5…

Back to school: choosing wisely for your children

Independent schools achieve a better balance of good academic, civic, religious and spiritual outcomes

Back to school: choosing wisely for your childrenParents, what are the top three things to pack in your kid’s school bag? These days, back-to-school supplies like coloured pencils and geometry sets run a poor second place to YouTube. At the end of the summer vacation, when I checked out videos about the best hairstyles, the best first-day-back outfits and hacks for making…

English public schools becoming less popular in Saskatchewan

French schools increased their share of students, as did Catholic schools. And independent schools and home-schooling options are becoming far more popular

English public schools becoming less popular in SaskatchewanChoosing a school other than your local English public school is increasingly popular in Canada and Saskatchewan is no exception. According to a recent analysis of Ministry of Education enrolment data by the Fraser Institute, the share of students attending English public schools in Saskatchewan showed one of the greatest declines in Canada over a…

The shift away from public schools in B.C.

B.C. policy-makers would be wise to take note that independent school enrolment is increasing and public school numbers are down

The shift away from public schools in B.C.By Angela MacLeod and Deani Van Pelt The Fraser Institute Funding for independent schools may well be reviewed by a new NDP government in British Columbia despite a growing preference for independent schools by B.C. families. But the enrolment numbers bear scrutiny before any major changes in policy are made by the New Democrats, if they…