TORONTO – As part of its Right to Read inquiry, the Ontario Human Rights Commission (OHRC) is holding public hearings, community meetings and conducting surveys, to engage people with lived experience and learn about human rights issues facing students with reading disabilities.
The OHRC will hold public hearings and community meetings to provide opportunities for students with reading disabilities, parents and guardians, educators and professionals to share their stories and perspectives and tell the OHRC what they think needs to be done to promote the right to read. Hearings will be held in Brampton on January 14, London on January 29, Thunder Bay on February 25 and Ottawa on March 10, 2020. Community meetings will be held in Hamilton, Barrie and Kenora in early 2020. Details will be on the OHRC website in the coming weeks.
The OHRC has also launched a survey for students with reading disabilities and their parents and guardians. The survey, available on the OHRC website, will help the OHRC understand and report on the experiences of students with reading disabilities in Ontario public schools, and assess whether public schools are using scientific evidence-based approaches to give students with reading disabilities meaningful access to education as required by the Ontario Human Rights Code (Code). The OHRC will post a separate survey for educators and other professionals in the coming weeks.
“Hearing the experiences of students with reading disabilities and those of their parents, guardians and educators is crucial to our Right to Read inquiry,” said OHRC Chief Commissioner Renu Mandhane. “It will help us ensure students with reading disabilities get meaningful access to education. I encourage these students and their parents and guardians throughout Ontario to complete the survey, and participate in our public hearings and community meetings.”
Since the OHRC launched the Right to Read inquiry in October, it has heard from more than 300 individuals. The OHRC has also written to the eight school boards it identified as a representative sample to request documents, data and information relevant to the inquiry.
The OHRC will release a formal report on findings and recommendations later in 2020.
Right to Read Inquiry terms of reference
Letter to Board Chair and Director of Education for eight selected school boards
Voices from the community
Voices from community partners
Right to Read flyer
OHRC initiatives related to disability and education
Communications & Issues Management
Ontario Human Rights Commission/Commission ontarienne des droits de la personne
“The Ontario Human Rights Commission promotes and enforces human rights to create a culture of human rights accountability.”