Jews in Canada Dissatisfied with Protestant Proposal on Schools

A Protestant brief proposing Jewish members on the Protestant committee of the Quebec Council of Education was termed here today “as an interim step of great significance” by Saul Hayes, executive vice-president of the Canadian Jewish Congress.

However, Mr. Hayes emphasized, what is really important is for Jews to sit on the school boards in Quebec and to have a say in the administration of tax monies. “The Jewish community,” Mr. Hayes pointed out,” pays its school taxes to the Protestant School Board and Jews are not free to present themselves for election, or to be appointed, to any of the boards. This is an inexcusable violation of even the most basic tenets of democracy.”

The Protestant proposal called for an amendment to the Education Act which would permit two associate members on the committee who would be neither Protestant nor Catholic. They would not have any right to vote on any question affecting religious instruction in the schools sponsored by the Protestant church, which most Jewish children in Montreal attend. There are no non-sectarian public schools in the province.

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