The Legislative Assembly of Ontario sits four days this week before Winter Recess.

Current and Upcoming Legislation

Bill 67, Racial Equity and Education Systems Act, 2021

This legislation was introduced on December 2, 2021 by NDP MPP Laura Mae Lindo. The legislation proposes a number of changes to the Education Act and other laws in the interest of improving racial equity in education.

Current Status: First Reading

Bill 43, Build Ontario Act (Budget Measures), 2021

This legislation was introduced on November 4, 2021 by Finance Minister Peter Bethlenfalvy. It contains 21 Schedules or changes to various Acts, which will implement the details of the Fall Economic Statement and the “Build Ontario” plan.

Current Status: Referred to the Standing Committee on Finance and Economic Affairs

Bill 34, Anti-Asian Racism Education Month Act, 2021

This legislation was reintroduced by PC MPP Vincent Ke on October 27, 2021. The Bill, if passed, proclaims May in each year as Anti-Asian Racism Education Month.

Status: Referred to the Standing Committee on Regulations and Private Bills.

Bill 13, Supporting People and Businesses Act, 2021

The legislation was introduced on October 7, 2021, by Nina Tangri, Associate Minister of Small Business and Red Tape Reduction. It includes 25 Schedules or proposed changes to various Acts, including Schedule 8 Education Act. “The Education Act is amended to remove references to ranked ballot elections, change when boards must elect their chairs and when the chief executive officer of a board must submit a report to the Minister, and eliminate certain requirements relating to the appointment of supervisory officers.” OPSBA staff have reviewed the draft legislation and regulatory proposal and sent in a brief response on November 10, 2021.

Current Status: Royal Assent received on December 2, 2021

Our London Family Act – TBC

The New Democratic Party of Ontario has partnered with the National Council of Canadian Muslims (NCCM) to, “create new legislation to combat Islamophobia,” in response to the tragedy that occurred last June in London, Ontario.

See what the legislation is to include and the recommendations from NCCM.

2022-23 Grants For Student Needs (GSN)

Last week, OPSBA sent in its final 2022-23 Education Funding/Grants for Student Needs (GSN) submission to the Minister of Education Stephen Lecce, the Deputy Minister Nancy Naylor and Assistant Deputy Minister Andrew Davis. It was also shared with the education critics and key education partners including PCODE, OSTA-AECO, OPC and the other school board/trustee associations. Please be sure to support the Association’s social media campaign by reposting and retweeting and also consider using the OPSBA submission in your board/trustee newsletters etc. A new OPSBA infographic outlining funding pressures can be found here.

Details for provincial pre-budget consultation have yet to be released by the Minister of Finance, but OPSBA will share its submission once details are known.

2021 Auditor General’s Report

Ontario’s Auditor General Bonnie Lysyk tabled her office’s annual report last week. It included 18 value-for-money audits covering a range of topics. One audit topic of interest is Financial Reporting of School Boards in Ontario.

See the news release

See the School Boards Financial Reporting 2021 Value-for-Money Review

COVID-19 Update / Return to School Fall 2021

As of the morning of December 3, 1,815 cases of COVID-19 have been reported in publicly funded schools in the past 14 days. Of those cases, 1,625 are students, 173 are staff, and 17 are not identified. Nine of the 4,844 schools in the province are currently closed.

On December 2, the government announced it is accelerating COVID-19 vaccine booster eligibility to Ontarians aged 50 and over as well as additional high-risk individuals. Starting on December 13 at 8 a.m., individuals aged 50 and over will be eligible to schedule their booster dose appointment through the COVID-19 vaccination portal, by calling the Provincial Vaccine Contact Centre, through Indigenous-led vaccination clinics, select pharmacies and primary care settings. Appointments will be booked for approximately six months (168 days) after a second dose. Beginning in January, Ontario will further expand eligibility for booster doses based on age and risk, with an interval of six to eight months from the second dose.

See the December 1 memo providing an update on Temporary Certificate of Qualification and Registration.

Other News Releases and Information