In a follow-up to Toronto Archbishop Aloysius Ambrozic’s categorical ‘No’ to condom promotion and information, The Interim contacted several Roman Catholic School Boards in Ontario outside the Toronto area.




Don Folz, the Assistant Director of Education for the Peterborough Northumberland Victoria & Newcastle RC School Board (23 elementary and three secondary with over 8,000 students), stated that his school board received no communication from Archbishop Aloysius Ambrozic.  His school board is not in the Archdiocese of Toronto.


However, Mr. Folz was aware of Archbishop Ambrozic’s statement rejection condom teaching in the schools and also of the fact that all Ontario bishops were in agreement.


Speaking on behalf of the Board, senior staff and trustees, he said that they were in favour of the statement.  Mr. Folz said that his board’s “whole focus is on chastity.”  They have not and do not intend to provide any information on contraceptives to their student body.


The Peterborough Board pays no attention to small pressure groups that are trying to introduce that kind of program into their schools. Foltz cited the example of a local group of public health nurses who were trying to introduce contraceptive teaching into the Catholic schools but were rejected outright.


A medical doctor connected with the group was “aghast that we are taking that attitude.”


Mr. Foltz is a family man with teen-age children.


“A Catholic school board should focus its attention on the large group who are chaste and support them so they can be the role model for the others,” he said.


Their motto should be “Hey! It’s okay to live a chaste life!”


The Peterborough Board has an active Family Life Advisory Committee of 15 people, including a Catholic priest, a Catholic medical doctor, a public health nurse, educators, community workers and parents that oversee any program introduced into the school system to date. To date it has strongly resisted pressures to cave into a secular approach to moral values.


They are reminded by opponents of their position that some of their (Catholic) school kids have been going to a birth control clinic in Peterborough for information.


But the schools are not acting as a conduit for this clinic, Mr. Foltz said.  If anybody decides to go to the clinic, that is their decision – but in no way will the Peterborough RC School Board co-operate in this endeavour.




George Flynn, Director of Education for the Waterloo Region RC Separate School Board (45 schools and over 13,000 students), stated that he had read Archbishop Aloysius Ambrozic’s statement and agreed with it, but it wasn’t a major issue with his Board.  Condoms or condom information disseminated in the schools is not an issue that the Board has discussed or is planning to discuss.


They already have in place an excellent AIDS Avoidance Program, said Mr. Flynn, initiated by Bishop Anthony Tonnos of the Hamilton diocese.  It reflects Catholic Christian values.


The Board has worked closely with the Medical Health Officer in the Waterloo area in implementing the program and he is sympathetic to the board’s position.


He makes sure that there is nothing contrary to Catholic teaching introduced into the schools.


Mr. Flynn said that public health nurses are certainly welcomed into the schools with this understanding.


The school can only do so much, Mr. Flynn stated; it is the parents who should set an example to their children and behave as a parent should.