Quebec parental rights in religious and moral education
By Jean Morse-Chevrier
During 2008, Catholic Insight brought several articles on Quebec and the crisis in its schools, all three by Douglas Farrow: No. 3 (March) schools and religion in Quebec; No. 6 (June); No. 8 (Sept.) re Quebec’s future and birthrate. This time we bring the views of the President of the Association of Catholic Parents of Quebec.
The offending course
Since September 2008, a new course of Ethics and Religious Culture (ERC) has been introduced into all Quebec schools, from grade one to the end of high school. Parents have been up in arms about this course since the Quebec government first made known its preliminary version in the fall of 2006. At that time, the Ministry of Education requested the Quebec Assembly of Catholic Bishops, the Association of Catholic Parents of Quebec, and other religious groups to give their opinion on the contents to the Committee for Religious Affairs.
As President of the Association of Catholic Parents of Quebec, I was outraged that, following the consultation, parents’ opinions were ignored. All parents consulted by the association had expressed their definite desire to maintain their right to oversee the courses. After all, its religious and moral content would be transmitted to their children.