TORONTO, July 12, 2012 /CNW/ - The Copyright Consortium of the Council
of Ministers of Education, Canada (CMEC) responded positively to the
Supreme Court of Canada's ruling today on the "fair dealing" provision
in the Copyright Act. With its decision, the Supreme Court has clarified that teachers can
copy short excerpts of a copyright-protected work for students in their
The CMEC Copyright Consortium is composed of the ministers of education
of the provinces and territories, with the exception of Quebec.
The consortium had asked the Supreme Court to interpret the fair dealing
provision in the Copyright Act to permit teachers to make copies of short excerpts from a
copyright-protected work, such as a book or a newspaper, for
distribution to students.
"Members of the consortium are very pleased with this decision, as it
clarifies an important provision in the copyright law for school
boards, administrators, and teachers," said Nova Scotia Minister of
Education Ramona Jennex, Chair of the CMEC Copyright Consortium. "By
allowing teachers to make copies of short excerpts of a
copyright-protected work for their classroom lessons, our Canadian
teachers are now on a level playing field with teachers in other
countries like the United States, Japan, and Germany.
"This is precisely the clarity we sought, so that teachers and students
may have the benefit of including short excerpts as extra lesson
materials to supplement their class resources."
The Chair of the CMEC Copyright Consortium explained that this ruling
does not adversely impact Canada's education publishing industry,
stating that, "Countries with copyright laws permitting a teacher to
copy short excerpts all have healthy educational publishing industries.
Making copies of short excerpts is not a substitute for purchasing
copyright-protected educational resources."
The Supreme Court of Canada's ruling overturns decisions made by the
Copyright Board of Canada and the Federal Court of Appeal, both of
which had narrowly defined the fair dealing provision and imposed a fee
for teachers making copies of short excerpts to supplement materials
purchased for class use.
In the coming weeks, the consortium will review this decision to assess
its full implications for teachers and students.
Founded in 1967, CMEC is the collective voice of Canada's ministers of
education. It provides leadership in education at the pan-Canadian and
international levels and contributes to the exercise of the exclusive
jurisdiction of provinces and territories over education. For more
information, visit us at www.cmec.ca.
SOURCE Council of Ministers of Education, Canada
For further information:
Tel.: 416-962-8100, ext. 259