|Members of Quebec’s only Mennonite community say they may move to Ontario or New Brunswick so they can keep their children in a private school that suits their religious beliefs.
Fifteen English-speaking Mennonite families in this small community in the Monteregie region say they won’t send their children to government-approved schools, balking at the teaching of evolution, the acceptance of gays and lesbians and low “morality standards.”
They say they are considering relocation out of fear that child-protection officials will seize their children.
Other townspeople here — mostly francophone Catholics — support the primarily English school, deemed illegal by Quebec’s Education Department.
The story continues:
|He said about 30 members of the community — young couples and their school-aged children — will have to move before school starts. The others will follow.
News reports last year about unsanctioned schools led to a complaint to the Education Department about the Mennonite school.
Parents were warned they would face legal proceedings if their children aren’t enrolled in sanctioned schools this fall. That could lead to children being taken from families
|In Roxton Falls, the vast majority of non-Mennonites strongly support the school, said the town’s Mayor, Jean-Marie Laplante. This week, he wrote letters to the education department and Education Minister Michelle Courchesne in an effort to save the school.|
We’ll see how it all shakes out.
I empathize (or at least sympathize) with my fellow-Mennonites and fellow-parents, but I wonder if Mr. Goosen didn’t overstate his case with this comment:
|“It boils down to intolerance to our religion” by education officials, said Ronald Goossen, who in the early 1990s was among the first Mennonites from Manitoba to move to Roxton Falls, a sleepy town on the Riviere Noire, about 100 kilometres east of Montreal.|
If they truly fail to meet whatever standards the state has, then change or move or appeal, but please don’t play the intolerance card.