Green Party Statement on International Teachers' Day

(OTTAWA) October 5, 2015 – Elizabeth May, Leader of the Green Party of Canada (Saanich – Gulf Islands), issued the following statement on World Teachers’ Day:

“Canadians owe a large debt to our teachers, who foster skills in our children that allow them to be model citizens and succeed in life. This year, World Teachers’ Day gives us a chance to Empower Teachers and Build Sustainable Communities.

“Many Canadians understand that the status quo on education is not working for our teachers and students. Studies consistently show that a student’s financial situation acts as a barrier for further success in learning. The Green Party’s plan to abolish tuition and slash student debt will not only jumpstart Canada’s economy, it will make it easier for teachers to help their students succeed.

“On behalf of the Green Party of Canada, I thank all teachers who make a difference in our children’s lives everyday.”

Christy Radbourne, principal, teacher, and Green Party candidate (Thunder Bay – Rainy River), continued: “ Far too often I see children from poor families come to school hungry. Hungry kids cannot learn. That’s why I am so proud our platform includes a school nutrition program. In the next minority government Green MPs will work across party lines to increase access for First Nations education by removing the 2% funding cap and fully funding the program back log. Too many young people are graduating from post-secondary education with enormous debts, or are choosing not to peruse it at all. Education is not an expense it’s an investment in Canada’s future.”

Mary Lou Babineau, professor and Green Party candidate (Fredericton), continued: "As I begin my 18th year of post-secondary teaching, it is very concerning for me to see how much more difficult it is for today's students to afford to attend university or college as compared to when I myself began university studies 24 years ago. Accessible post-secondary education and training are fundamental to both our economy and our ability, as a country, to ensure equality of opportunity for all.

“The Green Party has the only comprehensive, fully costed plan to make post-secondary education accessible to all of our young people. Providing significant, immediate debt relief and making tuition free by 2020 are long-term investments that will generate many returns for the Canadian economy in the long-term. In addition, these measures help to ensure Canadians' social and economic mobility, which is so important in creating a fair and equitable society."

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