Last month, the National Post reported that one in five schools in the Toronto public school system is at least 40 per cent empty and that the board hopes to save $10-15 million by consolidating or closing some of those institutions. West Toronto Collegiate cancelled its Grade 9 program this year because there were too few students enrolled in first-year high school. As Toronto District School Board chairman John Campbell succinctly put it: “We have too many schools and not enough students.” He says 110 schools are “undersubscribed,” which is a nice way of saying they are nowhere near capacity, partly due to the 4,000 students the board loses every year.
This is part of a larger trend. According to People for Education, there are 90,000 fewer students enrolled in Ontario public and separate schools today as compared to 2002. By 2013, there will be 45,000 fewer students than today – the equivalent of 100 empty schools. Up to 150 schools are expected to close within the next year or so across the province. Some parents are removing their children from state-run schools in favour of homeschooling or private schools. But that is only a small percentage. Furthermore, these decreases take into account the growing number of immigrant children in Ontario’s large cities.
Of course, the schools do not “lose” students. They have been missing for years. They were lost to abortion. In Ontario, there are about 40,000 abortions each and every year. No wonder there are fewer students. The Toronto Star called for “creative thinking on school closings.” One bold way to stanch the school closures in the near future would be to drastically reduce or eliminate abortion, yet most teacher’s unions support legal abortion.
The problem is not unique to Ontario. Schools are closing everywhere and, while the reasons for this are multiple and complex, the prevalence of abortion in Canada – more than 100,000 abortions annually – goes a long way to explaining why classrooms are emptying. You would think politicians and teachers’ unions could do the math: subtracting 100,000 children from the education system adds up to school closures and fewer teachers