In its efforts to see more people involved in the practice of democracy, CCLET has developed a unique approach to engaging educators in teaching critical thinking about rights and freedoms for social justice. Using principles that inform the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, CCLET provides teachers and students with a basic structure of questions that are applicable to nearly any issues involving considerations of fairness.


Teachers: Let’s Talk Free Expression

iStock_000021840548_MediumThe Canadian Civil Liberties Education Trust and the Centre for Free Expression at Ryerson University are collaborating on a project that will focus on freedom of expression for teachers in the K-12 public school systems. While those who teach in a university system are guaranteed academic freedom, there is no such guarantee for teachers of younger students. What are your views on this distinction? How should teachers’ expression be regulated, if at all? Have you had an experience where you, as a teacher, have been told not to speak, draw, perform, write, sing, dance, or protest?

We are interested in hearing from teachers and former teachers who may have experienced or had colleagues who experienced discipline or censure for their expression either in the classroom/school or outside of school and school hours. Incidents that involve lawful expression such as political speech, artistic expression, or expression critical of administration are of particular interest to us.

We would also like to hear from those who have experienced discipline under The Ontario Education Act section 264 (1) (c), regarding duties of a teacher.

If you would like to correspond by email, please contact CCLA’s Director of Education, April Julian at or by telephone at 416-363-0321 x228. All information will be kept confidential unless we receive consent to share information publicly.

CCLET in the Media

If you want to keep informed about controversies in schools and learning, or stay up-to-date on social justice and education issues, then you may want to have a look at these blog postings, op eds, speeches and articles by CCLET staff members.   CCLET writes! Our Director of Education, Danielle McLaughlin, has published many articles […]

CCLET in the Community

Do you belong to a seniors’ group, an ESL class, a youth group, a social action committee, or other community group? Do you know what your rights are? Are you a newcomer to Canada who has been told that if you want to complain about things in this country you should return to your country of origin? […]

Workshops for Teachers and Teacher Candidates

How do democratic principles apply to the teaching profession? Through CCLET’s interactive workshops, teachers and teacher candidates are encouraged to examine conflicts and controversies for which there can be no perfect solutions – and to actively seek out views that diff†er from their own. How do we address divergent views on issues such as abortion, […]


CCLET in the Schools

December 14, 2017

CCLET’s Teaching Civil Liberties program brings engaging speakers into Faculties of Education, where teacher candidates learn strategies for encouraging civic engagement and critical thinking about rights and freedoms in their future classrooms.  With roughly 2,000 prospective teachers participating in this program each year — many of whom will go on to teach hundreds of students […]

Fundamental Freedoms Conference 2017 – Toronto

December 5, 2017

The Canadian Civil Liberties Education Trust will celebrate its 21st annual Fundamental Freedoms Conference this year on Wednesday, December 6, 2017. The annual conference brings together hundreds of Toronto District School Board high school students. Students attending have the opportunity to attend workshops on many issues including: food security, police carding, health, sexuality, and the […]

Introducing the Winners of CCLET’s Annual Chernos Essay Competition

June 21, 2017

About the Prize: Each year, CCLET holds a high school essay competition in honor of the late Bernard Chernos, a civil libertarian, lawyer, and lover of lively debate. Students from across Canada are asked to respond to one of four questions dealing with a conflict of Charter rights and freedoms for a chance to win $500 […]

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