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Teaching About Controversial Issues: PSS 212




Teaching About Controversial Issues: PSS 212

Adoption Date:



This policy applies to all schools under the jurisdiction of Cape Breton-Victoria Regional School Board.



To provide guidelines for teaching about controversial issues.


Policy Statement

Cape Breton-Victoria Regional School Board believes that studying controversial issues is important in preparing students to develop their full potential to become confident, versatile, lifelong learners and thinkers.  Such study provides opportunities to respectfully examine different points of view and to reach sound judgements.


Cross Reference

Cape Breton-Victoria Regional School Board Mission Statement



This policy has been authorized by the Board under motions number....



It is the responsibility of the Director of Programs and Student Services to ensure that this policy and administrative procedures are implemented.


The Coordinator of Programs and Student Services will implement the policy and administrative procedures.




1.         Sensitivity on the part of the teachers, students, and other participants in controversial issues shall be exercised to ensure that students and others are not embarrassed, intimidated or ridiculed for positions they hold on controversial issues.

2.                   Treatment of the issue in question must be within the range, knowledge, maturity and competence of the students.

3.                   Information regarding the controversial issue must meet the requirements of provincially prescribed and approved courses of study.

4.                   Consideration of the issue should receive only as much time as is needed to address the issue adequately.

5.                   Controversial issues should be used by the teacher to promote critical inquiry rather than advocacy, and to teach students how to think rather than what to think.

6.                   A teacher who is in doubt about the advisability of discussing certain issues in the classroom shall confer with the principal concerning the appropriateness of doing so.

7.                   If parents request that their child be excused from participation in discussion of such material, arrangements are to be made to respect that request.


Associated Forms                                



Policy Review              

This policy will be reviewed by Director of Programs and Student Services within three years from the authorization date.



Board Members

All Policy Manual Holders