Teachers Target Social Issues Through Award-Winning Play

    TORONTO, Sept. 27 /CNW/ - Helping elementary students and teachers
understand and cope with social issues such as child and family poverty is a
key goal of a tour of the award winning play Danny, King of the Basement,
sponsored by the Elementary Teachers' Federation of Ontario (ETFO).
    The play will be presented in 70 host elementary schools in 15 school
districts across Ontario and will play to students from over 130 schools. The
ten-week tour, which begins with a special fundraising performance on
September 28 in Toronto at the Humberwood Downs Middle Academy, is funded by
the Ontario Ministry of Education. It is being undertaken in partnership with
Roseneath Theatre, whose high quality work is seen and known across the
country and around the world.

    (Editors: The tour schedule of 'Danny, King of the Basement' is available
    through the following link):


    "ETFO was asked by the Ministry to lead an initiative that would focus on
professional development for our members and support students and schools that
face challenging socio-economic circumstances," explained ETFO President David
Clegg. "The Danny play is a major component of this initiative, which we have
named The ETFO Education and Poverty Project."
    Danny, King of the Basement, tells the story of a young boy whose spirit
and imagination triumph over the challenges of homelessness and life in a
single-parent family. "The play also demonstrates that while teachers cannot
control the make-up of their student population, they can make a significant
impact on the lives and learning of their students," said Clegg.
    ETFO has also developed a professional development workshop that will be
offered to members in the 15 school districts that will host a Danny
performance. Objectives of the workshop are to help educators learn more about
the impact of poverty on student learning and how they can make a difference
in their own school setting.
    One school in each of the 15 school districts has been selected to look
more deeply into society's attitudes and beliefs about people living in
poverty and the impact of poverty on education and student learning. These
"Danny Schools" were nominated and selected in consultation with the Ministry
of Education, the local ETFO president, and the director of education.

    The Elementary Teachers' Federation of Ontario represents 70,000
elementary public school teachers and education workers across the province
and is the largest teacher federation in Canada.

For further information:

For further information: David Clegg, President, ETFO, (416) 962-3836
(Office), (416) 948-1592 (Cell); 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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