Do you remember Josh Alexander? He is the Renfrew County Catholic District School Board (RCCDSB) high school student who was arrested and suspended in November 2022 for saying that there are only genders, and standing up for the safety of the females in his school who felt uncomfortable with biological males using the women's washrooms. He was suspended and banned from attending his high school classes and had a hearing to appeal this decision on November 15 and 17, 2023.
The board wasn't concerned at all about their part in jeopardizing Josh's high school career, as they spent the duration of the appeal asking him absurd and unrelated questions, such as his opinions on Jason Aldean's country song "Try that in a Small Town".
The RCCDSB has recently made the decision that Josh Alexander will NOT allowed to return to school. The board has done all of this in secrecy and has not given any reasoning as to how or why they made this decision. Josh's lawyer, James Kitchen said "Nobody knows the reasons why the school board has upheld the exclusions and suspensions. They can't test the panel's reasons. They can't review them and think about them and comment on them, and critique them."
While the outcome of Josh's appeal wasn't necessarily surprising - the board has made it very clear that they have no desire to assist this student in his right to education, or uphold their duty to protect the students or freedom of speech within their schools - the lack of transparency on the board's part is still cause for concern.
Josh Alexander has been a voice for students on an important issue that isn't isolated to his high school in Renfrew. We have been hearing over and over again from students and parents, about biological males using women's washrooms in school settings where vulnerable children are put at risk.
The trustees and governing bodies of Renfrew County Catholic District School Board have shown that they are more concerned with bowing down to a woke agenda than doing their jobs and protecting the students they represent.
Freedom of speech and children's safety is under fire in Ontario's school boards, and we need to act now!