A proposed Africentric program to be housed at a high school in Toronto’s west end is being criticized by students who say the plan could limit diversity. On Wednesday, the Toronto District School Board will vote on plans to incorporate the program into Oakwood Collegiate. Students, who, the Toronto Star reported on Sunday, were “blindsided” by the news have organized an online petition and a Facebook group in opposition to the proposal.
“Not that students are racist, but some parents could stop sending their kids because they could see it as potentially dangerous, which could reduce the enrolment of the school. The idea of segregation is not something Canadians like; we’re a mosaic of various cultures,” Grade 11 student Matthew Wong told the Star on Tuesday. Another student told CTV News that, “this is one of the most diverse schools I know. There are Asians, blacks, whites. It doesn’t matter. It is a diverse school.”
In 2009 an Africentric elementary program was opened at Sheppard Public School, and many who attend that school live in the same area as Oakwood Collegiate.