Elementary Teachers Celebrate Human Rights Day

Education can provide a pathway for change

TORONTO, Dec. 10 /CNW/ - December 10 is Human Rights Day, a day to celebrate 'The Universal Declaration of Human Rights' proclaimed by the General Assembly of the United Nations on December 10, 1948. The Declaration affirms that everyone is entitled to fundamental rights without restrictions of any kind.

"Elementary teachers understand that educating children and the greater community about the negative impacts of discrimination and exclusion can be a pathway to a more just and equitable society," said Sam Hammond, President, Elementary Teachers' Federation of Ontario (ETFO)

"A main objective of ETFO is to foster a climate of social justice and equity and take a leadership role in confronting individual and systemic discrimination and inequality in all its forms. The federation has focused on lobbying for social change at the provincial level and developing classroom resources and professional development to share with educators across Canada and internationally," Hammond said.

ETFO's human rights materials address issues such as homophobia and heterosexism, ability, violence against women and children, equity and inclusion, racism, classism, and rights of the child and can be used in the elementary classroom to help teachers and students begin conversations about human rights.

Two years ago with funding from the Ontario Ministry of Education, ETFO began an intensive program of addressing poverty and its impact on education, The goal of ETFO's 'Education and Poverty' project is to educate teachers and the broader community about the impact of poverty in the classroom and to develop strategies to address some of its impacts.

In conjunction with Right To Play International, ETFO is working with the Ministry of Education and the national teacher union in Benin, West Africa on the implementation of an early childhood education program under Education International's 'Education For All' plan. This initiative will enhance the learning of their young children but will also allow young girls to go to school and not have to drop out at age 6 or 7 to watch their young siblings.

The Elementary Teachers' Federation of Ontario represents 73,000 elementary public school teachers and education workers across the province and is the largest teacher federation in Canada.

SOURCE Elementary Teachers' Federation of Ontario

For further information: For further information: Sam Hammond, President, ETFO, (416) 962-3836 (Office); Larry Skory, ETFO Communications, (416) 962-3836 (Office), 416-948-0195 (Cell)

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Elementary Teachers' Federation of Ontario

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