Editorial Cartoon by Graeme MacKay, The Hamilton Spectator – Wednesday January 23, 2024
Ontario’s Kindergarten Curriculum Makeover: A Balancing Act Amidst Past Greenbelt Controversies
Ah, Doug Ford, the man with a plan. Or, well, at least a plan to revamp Ontario’s kindergarten curriculum. Because, you know, nothing says “education reform” like a leader who once tried to turn the Greenbelt into a suburban paradise. But hey, let’s not dwell on past mistakes; let’s focus on the bright future of Ontario’s little tots and their newfound appreciation for fractions and phonics.
In a groundbreaking move that will undoubtedly reshape the trajectory of the province, Education Minister Stephen Lecce announced the government’s grand plan to mix “back to basics” instruction with play-based learning in kindergarten. Finally, the kids will be able to recite the alphabet while constructing houses with blocks. Who knew learning could be so… constructive?
Lecce emphasized the importance of developing “core foundational skills” in our youngest students. Because, let’s face it, the fate of the entire province rests on whether Timmy can correctly identify an up arrow or if Susie can spell “foundation” while building her Lego masterpiece. Move over, Shakespeare, the future literary giants are in kindergarten.
But let’s not forget the genius behind this educational revolution – Doug Ford, the man who once thought it would be a great idea to sacrifice the Greenbelt for the sake of affordable housing. Because who needs a protected environmental area when you can have a few more cookie-cutter houses, right?
In the 2018 election, Ford vowed to open up the Greenbelt, promising developers a piece of the protected pie. However, after a brief moment of enlightenment (or perhaps a strong public backlash), he backtracked, claiming he wouldn’t develop the area after all. Fast forward to 2022, and surprise, surprise – he did exactly what he said he wouldn’t.
The Auditor General then swooped in, revealing a flawed process that conveniently favoured certain developers, leading to the removal of 7,400 acres of Greenbelt land. The cost? A mere $8 billion. But hey, who’s counting when you’re reshaping the landscape of the province, one questionable decision at a time?
Ford’s Housing Minister, Steve Clark, faced calls to resign, with the Integrity Commissioner confirming ethics rule violations. But who needs ethical governance when you can build affordable homes for “newcomers and young people” on the Greenbelt? Forget the environment; think of the children – the ones who will be marvelling at their newly constructed block houses in kindergarten.
In the end, after a series of resignations, apologies, and promises to build within urban boundaries, Ford decided to reverse his decision and restore the Greenbelt lands. A true masterclass in leadership and decision-making, wouldn’t you say?
So, as Ontario gears up for the kindergarten curriculum overhaul, let’s all take a moment to appreciate the strategic mind behind it all – the man who brought you Greenbelt chaos and now wants your four-year-old to master fractions. Bravo, Doug Ford, bravo. (AI)