Curriculum Changes FAQ

We recognize that there may be a number of questions and some anxiety around the changes relating to the re-issued 2010 Health and Physical Education Curriculum. We are providing these Frequently Asked Questions as a way to inform our staff, families and community members about the changes. We will continue to update this section as information becomes available.

We believe that our schools need to be safe, inclusive and caring spaces for everyone that walks through our doors. Student and Staff well-being is a key priority in the WRDSB Strategic Plan and we will continue to work to ensure to ensuring that each and every student feels included, safe and cared for and that the diversity and the lived experiences of our students are validated, respected and seen as adding value to the classroom and school community. We have a collective responsibility to the Ontario Human Rights Code, the Education Act, the Safe and Accepting Schools Act, and WRDSB’s Strategic Plan, policies and procedures. The Waterloo Region District School Board is confident in our staff’s commitment to meet the needs of each and every student, especially those who may be impacted by these changes.

Health and Physical Education

What curriculum will teachers use this school year?

Teachers will use the re-issued version of the 2010 Health and Physical Education curriculum last taught in 2014.

Will these changes affect all grades?

The re-issued curriculum is only for grades 1-8. Secondary school students will continue to learn the 2015 curriculum.

What supports are available for teachers to help with the transition?

Staff are currently reviewing the interim curriculum to compare it with the 2015 version and determine what resources, updates or training may be required in order to best support teachers. These resources and additional materials will be made available once they are ready

Are resources available for parents?

The Ministry of Education has not released any resources specifically related to the re-issued 2010 HPE curriculum. We will share these resources on our Board and school websites as they become available from the Ministry.

Do these changes mean that students will no longer learn about gender identity and sexual orientation?

The WRDSB has a responsibility to students under the Safe and Accepting Schools legislation, Mental Health strategy, and the Ontario Human Rights Code to create inclusive and supportive environments for all students. While gender identity and sexual orientation are no longer explicit in the re-issued 2010 HPE curriculum, it is our responsibility to ensure that the lived experiences of our students and families are represented in the classroom.

Can my school still have a Gay Straight Alliance (GSA)?

Yes. Schools that currently have a GSA club are encouraged to continue to support them. Schools that do not currently have a GSA in place are encouraged to create this safe space for students as per Bill 13 – Accepting Schools Act.

Currently, each of our secondary schools and more than 15 elementary schools have a GSA. These clubs are safe spaces for our students, staff and allies of LGBTQI+ to come together and discuss issues they may be facing and topics that matter to them. Our GSA’s are places where our students feel comfortable being themselves and can have open and honest conversations with their peers.

Who should I contact if I have questions or concerns about the changes to the HPE Curriculum?

We encourage you to contact your local MPP to voice your questions or concerns. Parents and community members may also wish to be part of the provincial consultations that the Ministry of Education will be hosting. Details about these consultations have not yet been announced.