Ontario Libertarian Party
Attention News/Assignment Editors:
Ontario Libertarian Party Response to Statements in the Liberal Throne Speech Concerning Education
October 15, 2005 – Toronto, Ontario The following statement is made on behalf of the Ontario Libertarian Party by Alan Mercer, Libertarian candidate for the upcoming Scarborough-Rouge River by-election.
According to the Ontario government, “too many young Ontarians are making the wrong choice: nearly one-third of them are dropping out” of school. So the government of Premier Dalton McGuinty “will introduce legislation that would make learning to age 18 mandatory in Ontario.”
The Ontario government calls dropping out of high school the “wrong choice”. But it insists on robbing young people of the ability to make that choice by locking them in a classroom of one kind or another until they are 18.
Obviously many young people have no interest in school, and many of those forced to stay will disrupt classes for other students who want to learn. Some will be anxious to work in order to earn a living, to gain independence, or even to escape poverty. Some will want to start their own business early. Some will learn much more and benefit greatly from earlier work experience. For certain, they will have their whole life in which to continue learning in their own way and on their own initiative.
The Ontario government assumes a great deal if it believes it can make school so interesting that every teen will enjoy hanging around until age 18.
And the government assumes even more if it believes that it can make the process of learning – a process of the human mind that requires free will – “mandatory”. Outside of a novel by George Orwell, the words “learning” and “mandatory” should not ever be used in the same sentence.
Education is important but it should never be “mandatory”.
The Ontario Libertarian Party believes in getting the government out of education, and letting parents and teens make their own choices about education.###