Policy, Reports, and Strategic Plans

Ontario Human Rights Commission: Tackling Anti-Black Racism in Education

The Ontario Human Rights Commission acknowledges the deep-rooted challenges posed by systemic anti-Black racism in the province's education system, hindering progress for Black communities over generations. The recent surge in visibility of anti-Black racism in Ontario has reignited calls to address this crisis. With over 30 years of reports and studies, the OHRC emphasizes the persistent existence of systemic anti-Black racism in education, deeply ingrained in institutional policies and practices. While heartened by growing community activism, the OHRC stresses the importance of collaboration with communities, schools, educators, and duty-holders to instigate necessary changes for the well-being, achievement, and sense of belonging of Black students.


What We Heard Report: Anti-Black Racism in Education Roundtables

Anti-Black sentiments remain deeply entrenched within Ontario's education system. However, Black students and educators are at the forefront, striving to create an inclusive and equitable educational system. The Ontario Human Rights Commission (OHRC) responded with the launch of their Anti-Black Racism in Education Initiative, culminating in Phase 2 - roundtable discussions, completed in April 2023 with diverse stakeholders. This report distills crucial insights, including transformative dialogue, and emphasizes the imperative for urgent action towards an inclusive and equitable education system. By incorporating the powerful testimonies of Black students, the report underscores the ongoing need for learning about anti-black racism to cultivate supportive environments.


The Ontario Human Rights Commission: Recommendations 

The Ontario Human Rights Commission has compiled a list of recommendations from 83 anti-racism reports to support the well-being of Black students in Ontario's public education system. This compendium underlies OHRC's guidance for stakeholders in the education sector. The compendium organized these recommendations under the following sections: performance indicators and outcomes; student achievement and black joy; professional development and education; educator support and opportunities, data collection; enforcement and accountability mechanisms; and relationships, policy, and advocacy drivers.


People for Education: A progress report on anti-racism policy across Canada

People for Education provides an overview of the state of anti-racism legislation in Ontario and its implementation in school boards. The organization identifies the percentage of Ontario public school boards conducting various race-based data measurements and implementing specific anti-racism strategies. They conclude that the current state of anti-racism policy needs to be more consistently applied, and provide recommendations to standardize its application.


People for Education: The inconsistent and under-resourced state of anti-racism strategies across Canada

People for Education's report shows inconsistent and under-resourced anti-racism strategies throughout Canada, particularly underscoring gaps in implementation within Ontario schools. Despite a government commitment of $45 million to a three-year Anti-Racism Strategy in 2019, the report reveals a deceleration in the execution of Ontario's school board equity plans. Persistent issues include a deficiency in disaggregated data collection, the absence of a national strategy, and a lack of implementation framework. To rectify these challenges, People for Education recommends addressing societal taboos surrounding race, enhancing transparency in data collection and reporting, and fostering increased involvement from historically impacted groups.


Report: Peel District School Board approved the most comprehensive Anti-Racism Policy ever announced by a school board in Ontario

The Peel District School Board has approved a comprehensive Anti-Racism Policy, the most extensive ever announced by an Ontario school board, aimed at dismantling racialized education disparities. The policy, developed in collaboration with the community, staff, and the Ontario Human Rights Commission, emphasizes community voice and aims to create an equitable, anti-racist, anti-oppressive, and inclusive learning environment. The policy includes measures such as data collection to address issues like bullying and suspensions, promoting cultural safety and inclusive learning, providing intensive training for teaching staff, ensuring diversity in hiring and leadership, and implementing a transparent complaint resolution process. Additionally, the PDSB introduced the Black Student Success Strategy as a companion document to eliminate anti-Black racism from its operations, resources, staffing, and leadership.


Building a Foundation for Change: Canada’s Anti-Racism Strategy 2019–2022

The 2019-2022 iteration of Canada's Anti-Racism Strategy starts by recognizing the prevalent racism and discrimination experienced by marginalized groups with a focus on Indigenous Peoples. Highlighted in this report, the Government of Canada demonstrates its commitment to equity, diversity, and inclusion through federal leadership, empowering communities, and promoting awareness and attitude changes. This initiative builds upon existing governmental efforts and integrates lived experiences to create comprehensive and sustainable transformation.


Annual progress report 2022: Ontario’s Anti-Racism Strategic Plan

The 2022 Annual Progress Report outlines efforts to dismantle systemic barriers for marginalized populations. In pursuit of this goal, the government enacted Ontario's pioneering anti-racism legislation, which uniquely gathers race-based data across sectors such as justice, education, and child welfare. The strategic plan delineates five pillars, with the policy, research, and evaluation component specifically addressing the promotion of racial equity in schools. The report highlights initiatives, such as teacher hiring practices, that prioritize representation and reflection of historically underrepresented communities.


Challenging Discrimination through Community Conversations; Season 2, 2021 – 2022

The Centre for Race and Culture published the recordings and infographics developed from their online roundtables with participants from the public, academia, and other organizations. These roundtables sought to create a discussion around inequities faced by marginalized peoples in Alberta. In session 9, the Centre conducted a roundtable on "anti-racism practices in education," which highlighted the inequities of the Albertan education curriculum. Some strategies shared to combat racism in education included understanding subconscious bias, increasing representation in school books, media, and teaching roles; building resilience in students; and ensuring racialized students and parents feel that their perspectives are valued.



Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board addresses anti-Black racism

Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board (HWDSB) addresses anti-Black racism by prioritizing equity, acknowledging historical impacts, and promoting African descent contributions. Emphasizing inclusive classrooms, diverse staff, unbiased policies, and ongoing professional learning, HWDSB ensures racism-free environments, fosters positive settings, advances diversity, and monitors progress through data analysis, ensuring a commitment to respect and understanding.


Human Rights, Anti-Discrimination and Anti-Racism Policy

The Durham District School Board (DDSB) is dedicated to establishing inclusive, equitable, and discrimination-free environments aligned with legislative acts and Ministry of Education guidelines. The DDSB actively engages the community, applies universal human rights principles, and collaborates to address and combat discrimination. Their initiatives involve fostering safe spaces, championing diversity, and eliminating barriers to uphold high expectations and accountability. The DDSB emphasizes ongoing learning to improve equitable experiences and outcomes for all.


Government Policies

A guide for Canadians seeking information on anti-racism policies, intiatives, and incidents, with a specific focus on anti-Asian racism in Canada. The materials provided are current up to 2022 and earlier, offering valuable resources for understanding community engagement sessions, addressing racism, and exploring incidents related to anti-Asian hate.


Resources Related to Anti-Racism in Canada

The Ontario Secondary School Teachers’ Federation (OSSTF) has curated a webpage featuring diverse anti-racism resources encompassing themes such as anti-Black and Indigenous racism, Islamophobia, and Antisemitism. The page additionally outlines their equity action plan, acknowledging systemic barriers encountered by marginalized groups, including OSSTF members. It highlights various programs and initiatives launched over the past decade to address racial inequities, aiming to achieve a discrimination-free public education system for students.


Take action

Connect with us

Address: 2425 Eglinton Ave E, Suite 214, Scarborough, ON M1K 5G8

Special Thanks to Our Funding Partners

Ontario Trillium Foundation
Status of Women Canada