Laurier-Greenway Compromise of 1896

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Manitoba School Question

TERMS OF AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE GOVERNMENT OF CANADA AND THE GOVERNMENT OF MANITOBA FOR THE SETTLEMENT OF THE SCHOOL QUESTION, NOVEMBER 16, 1896.

Article 1

Legislation shall be introduced and passed at the next regular session of the Legislature of Manitoba embodying the provisions hereinafter set forth in amendment to the "Public Schools Act", for the purpose of settling the educational questions that have been in dispute in that province.

Article 2

Religious teaching to be conducted as hereinafter provided:

(1) If authorized by a resolution passed by a majority of the school trustees, or,

(2) If a petition be presented to the board of school trustees asking for religious teaching and signed by the parents or guardians of at least ten children attending the school in the case of a rural district, or by the parents or guardians of at least twenty-five children attending the school in a city, town or village.

(3) Such religious teaching to take place between the hours of 3.30 and 4 o'clock in the afternoon, and to be conducted by any Christian clergyman whose charge includes any portion of the school district, or by a person duly authorized by such clergyman, or by a teacher when so authorized.

(4) Where so specified in such resolution of the trustees, or where so required by the petition of the parents or guardians, religious teaching during the prescribed period may take place only on certain specified days of the week instead of on every teaching day.

(5) In any school in towns and cities where the average attendance of Roman Catholic children is forty or upwards, and in villages and rural districts where the average attendance of such children is twenty-five or upwards, the trustees shall, if required by the petition of the parents or guardians of such number of Roman Catholic children respectively, employ at least one duly certificated Roman Catholic teacher in such school.

In any school in towns and cities where the average attendance of non-Roman Catholic children is forty or upwards, and in villages and rural districts where the average attendance of such children is twenty-five or upwards, the trustees shall, if required by the petition of the parents or guardians of such children, employ at least one duly certificated non-Roman Catholic teacher.

(6) Where religious teaching is required to be carried on in any school in pursuance of the foregoing provisions, and there are Roman Catholic children and non-Roman Catholic children attending such school, and the school-room accommodations does not permit of the pupils being placed in separate rooms for the purpose of religious teaching, provisions shall be made by regulations of the Department of Education (which regulations the Board of school trustees shall observe) whereby the time allotted for religious teaching shall be divided in such a way that religious teaching of the Roman Catholic children shall be carried on during the prescribed period on one-half of the teaching days in each month, and the religious teaching of the non-Roman Catholic children may be carried on during the prescribed period on one-half of the teaching days in each month.

(7) The Department of Education shall have the power to make regulations not inconsistent with the principles of this Act for the carrying into effect the provisions of this Act.

(8) No separation of the pupils by religious denominations shall take place during the secular school work.

(9) Where the school room accommodation at the disposal of the trustees permits, instead of alloting different days of the week to the different denominations for the purpose of religious teaching, the pupils may be separated when the hour for religious teaching arrives, and placed in separate rooms.

(10) Where ten of the pupils in any school speak the French language (or any language other than English) as their native language, the teaching of such pupils shall be conducted in French (or such other language), and English upon the bilingual system.

(11) No pupils to be permitted to be present at any religious teaching unless the parents or guardians of such pupils desire it. In case the parents or guardians do not desire the attendance of the pupils at such religious teaching, then the pupils shall be dismissed before the exercises, or shall remain in another room.

SOURCE: Canada, (1897), no. 35, 1-2.

Notes