Ophea supportive of the government of Ontario's next step in finalizing the Health and Physical Education curriculum
TORONTO, Oct. 31, 2014 /CNW/ - Ophea is pleased with the announcement made yesterday (October 30, 2014) by the government of Ontario that they will be taking steps to conduct additional parent consultations to finalize Ontario's 15 year old Health and physical Education (H&PE) curriculum. The H&PE curriculum includes many important health topics, including sexual health education. This curriculum stands to be the single largest health promotion intervention this province has ever seen.
Ophea is supportive of parent consultations as the next phase in finalizing and releasing a current, relevant and age-appropriate H&PE curriculum, recognizing that this curriculum is the most consulted on curriculum ever. For the past four years, Ophea has led a coalition of 50 health sector organizations calling on the government to update the elementary and secondary H&PE curriculum.
"Over two million students in Ontario's publicly funded schools are being taught from a curriculum that has not been fully updated in over 15 years," said Chris Markham, Executive Director and CEO of Ophea. "Revisions to the curriculum focus on teaching students to be better able to make informed choices, build relationships based on respect and trust, and develop communities of inclusion. It is our position that students have a right to an up-to-date, research-based curriculum."
By now it's common knowledge that compared to their parents' generation, today's kids are less healthy and are facing greater health risks than ever before. Students need the knowledge and skills to make informed choices about their health and well-being. We all have a role to play – parents, teachers, healthcare professionals and policy makers – in helping kids lead healthy, active lives. Parents across Ontario want an updated curriculum and students want up-to-date information.
As it stands, while the curriculum contains valuable information, students are being left to fill in some important gaps on their own. Sexual health education is a right. Ontario is falling dangerously behind and this step to finalize the curriculum is necessary. Revisions to the curriculum are long overdue and Ontario students have waited long enough.
Ophea is a not-for-profit organization that champions healthy, active living in schools and communities through quality programs and services, partnerships and advocacy. Ophea's vision is that all children and youth will value and enjoy the lifelong benefits of healthy, active living. To learn more about Ophea visit www.ophea.net. To view Ophea's H&PE curriculum advocacy visit www.OurRightToLearn.ca
For further information: Media Contacts: Ruth Kates, Marketing and Communications Leader, Ophea, [email protected], 416-426-7020; Chris Markham, Executive Director & CEO, Ophea, [email protected], 416-409-3784