TORONTO, Ontario, March 9, 2012 (LifeSiteNews.com) – The Ontario English Catholic Teachers Association (OECTA) is hosting a Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgendered (LGBT) conference this May “for classroom teachers and administratyors (sic) on supporting maginalized (sic) and LGBT students in Ontario’s Catholic schools.”
Their theme: “Reach Every Student. Know Their Story.”
The conference will take place May 4th through 5th at the Hilton Toronto Hotel and will include four featured speakers.
Dr. Catherine Taylor
Dr. Catherine Taylor is the author of the 2011 national survey “Every Class in Every School”, the results from which she uses to campaign to have gay and lesbian themes reflected in school curricula. The survey was commissioned and funded by Egale, Canada’s most influential homosexual lobby group. Egale was one of the leading advocates for same-sex ‘marriage’ and is known for making vitriolic attacks on the Catholic Church and its moral opposition to their agenda.
Based on the survey’s results, Taylor recommended that the “Ministries of Education and school divisions require the inclusion of respectful representations of LGBTQ people in courses and provide curriculum guidelines and resources for mainstreaming LGBTQ-inclusive teaching, including intersectionality, across the curriculum and auditable evidence of meaningful implementation.”
She also recommended that “schools strongly support the efforts of students to start GSAs, or similar LGBTQ-inclusive student-led clubs, and that in schools where students have not come forward, administration should ask teachers to offer to work with students to start such clubs.”
Taylor will speak at the OECTA conference about “Why we need to make it better now for LGBT students.”
Dr. Dorothy Espelage, an educational psychologist from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, has worked to “integrate the areas of bullying and homophobia” with the goal of helping homosexual youth develop their identities with the support of various social systems including family, peers, and schools.
Espelage will “discuss differences in academic and psychological outcomes of LGBT and straight students in U.S. schools.”
Mark McGowan, professor of History at the University of Toronto and principal of St. Michael’s College, is known for his advocacy for the continuation of Catholic education. In 2003, McGowan denounced a lecture presented in St. Michael’s College by world-renowned Catholic philosopher Peter Kreeft. In his lecture, Kreeft expounded on Catholic teaching regarding homosexuality and answered pointed questions by homosexual activists who attended the event.
At that time, McGowan said that the “Kreeft lecture greatly detracted from the inclusive and respectful environment we are trying to nurture at St. Michael’s.”
McGowan will speak on “Walking the Less Travelled Road: Equity and Diversity Education and Denominational Rights in Ontario’s Catholic Schools.”
Paul Cavalluzzo, legal counsel for OECTA, has previously advised the Catholic Association that Catholic teaching is “idealistic.”
In 1997, Ontario Catholic Trustees published “Witnesses to Faith,” a 36 page booklet in which they set down their expectations for Catholic educators. Witnesses to Faith encouraged teachers that they be a true witness to the faith by reflecting in their lives and in their teaching the tradition and heritage of Catholicism, and that they keep themselves informed through professional development of contemporary Catholic teaching.
At that time, Cavalluzzo advised OECTA president Marshall Jarvis that the document “sets out expectations which are idealistic in the sense that one would have to be a near-perfect being in order to meet them,” adding that “these expectations will lead to a great deal of uncertainty in that the truth lies in the eye of the beholder.”
Cavalluzzo will speak on “relevant equity policies and legislation.”
LifeSiteNews attempted to contact OECTA by phone and e-mail, but messages were not returned by press time.
The Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches that while “homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered … [and] under no circumstances can they be approved,” men and woman who have “homosexual tendencies” must be “accepted with respect, compassion, and sensitivity.”