|Volume 5 Number 1||Published by the Literacy Development Council Newfoundland and Labrador||September 1997|
The Literacy Development Council will develop a literacy plan for Newfoundland and Labrador.
Dr. William Fagan is the Chairperson of the Council. Dr. Fagan says the Council wants the public's comments on the Strategic Provincial Literacy Plan. He says it is important for people to speak out about the issue.
Roger Grimes is the Minister of Education. He says the plan will address literacy needs in Newfoundland and Labrador.
A Botwood man remembers the Ocean Ranger disaster.
Red Cross ice safety tips that could save your life.
On September 3 the people of Newfoundland and Labrador voted on whether or not they want a single school system for this province. Seventy-three percent of those who voted said yes. A single school system will allow children from all religions to go to the same schools.
Newfoundland and Labrador was given the right to have schools run by the churches when the province joined Canada in 1949. This was written in the Canadian constitution. A constitution is a document that guarantees certain rights and freedoms. Term 17 of the constitution must be changed before we have a single school system.
The first vote on changing the province's school system was held in 1995. Fifty-four per cent of those who voted at that time said yes. The Roman Catholic Church and Pentecostal Assemblies did not agree with the change.
They took the provincial government to court. They asked to have the changes to Term 17 stopped. Judge Leo Barry gave the churches an injunction. An injunction is a legal action to stop somebody from doing something until a decision can be made in court. The injunction stopped the province from making changes to Term 17.
Premier Tobin decided to hold another vote. He asked people to vote on a new question. This question asked people if they wanted a single school system. The churches will not be involved in running this new system, but students will be able to do religion courses. Students can still celebrate religious events like Christmas and Easter.
Members of the House of Assembly recently voted in favour of changing the school system. All the members voted yes. Members of Parliament and the Senate must approve a change to Term 17. Newfoundland and Labrador will then be able to have a single school system.