About Articles The below articles are published by the Education Law Section of the Ontario Bar Association. Members are encouraged to submit articles. About Articles



Hansman v Neufeld: Counter-Speech and Trans Rights

  • November 17, 2023
  • Rachel Allen (she/her), Amy Chen (she/her)

In 2023, the Supreme Court of Canada considered a defamation case revolving around the public criticism of transphobic and homophobic comments made by a school board trustee. The decision of Hansman v Neufeld emphasized the importance of counter-speech and recognized the trans community is a marginalized group deserving rights and protections under Canadian law.

Education Law, Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Law, Student Forum

The Potential Impact of Bill C-27 on School Boards

  • May 10, 2023
  • Nadya Tymochenko and Kayla Cockburn

While federal bills generally do not impact the operations of provincially regulated school boards, Bill C-27 will require a higher degree of protection for the personal information of minors. This article outlines some of the considerations for school boards if this Bill becomes law.

Education Law, Student Forum

No Just Cause for Termination Despite Teacher’s Lack of Professional Judgment

  • January 30, 2023
  • Aileen Gardiner

Teachers must behave professionally and respect boundaries in their relationships with students; however, a failure to do so is not necessarily just cause for dismissal. Before dismissal, the school board may be expected to provide guidance on the boundary between being a “caring adult” and inappropriate conduct.

Education Law, Student Forum

Court of Appeal Finds Section 8 of the Charter's Privacy Protections Apply to Employees in School Workplaces

  • January 30, 2023
  • Andrew Easto

This detailed case summary reviews the Ontario Court of Appeal's decision in Elementary Teachers Federation of Ontario v. York Region District School Board. In this groundbreaking decision, the Court of Appeal held that section 8 of the Charter applies to the actions of principals conducting workplace investigations. Further, the Court found that the Board’s investigation violated the teachers’ reasonable expectation of privacy and constituted an unreasonable search under section 8.

Constitutional, Civil Liberties and Human Rights Law, Education Law, Labour and Employment Law and 1 more..., Student Forum

A Teacher’s Past Life May Come Back to Haunt Them

  • September 09, 2022
  • Gillian Tuck Kutarna and Kayla Cockburn

Teachers may be disciplined for conduct before they registered with the Ontario College of Teachers if it impacts their suitability as a teacher.

Education Law, Student Forum

Wandering Children and Educator Culpability

  • September 09, 2022
  • Renata Antoniuk

This article discusses two recent arbitration awards considering the appropriate discipline for an educator when a child in their care wanders off school property unsupervised.

Education Law, Student Forum

Education Law Implications of the OHRC’s Right to Read Report

  • May 13, 2022
  • Jean-Frédéric (J-F) Hübsch

The Right to Read inquiry of the Ontario Human Rights Commission found that Ontario's public education system is failing students with reading disabilities, among others, by not using an evidence-based approach to teach children how to read. This article summarizes a number of the important recommendations of the Right to Read report.

Education Law, Student Forum