High school student Ryan Klassen sent out a mass email to inform various groups of the initiative he had taken at this school.
Included in his email were the Rebel News tips line ([email protected]), the mayor of Tecumseh, Gary McNamara, his local government representatives, MPP Rick Nicholss and MP Dave Epp, as well as Tony Omar, the principle of his high school, Leamington District Secondary School and the Director of Education Erin Kelly. He also included one other media outlet, AM 800 News.
No one except Rebel News responded.
In this exclusive interview, I discuss Ryan’s initiative to showcase opposition to the indiscriminate vaccine mandate at his high school.
A note from his original email, titled “A Concerned Student,” reads:
I am writing a letter to you out of concern regarding the double vaccine mandate that prevents students from participating in extracurricular activities like school sports teams, student parliament, and all other programs.
… this an abuse of power, and indoctrination, this is simply a violation of our human rights … you have also stripped many students of school scholarships, and even future job opportunities.
This mandate is forcing discrimination back into the school's system. If history has shown us anything, it is that any form of segregation and division does not have a positive impact. Our world is already divided, and putting this mandate into our school system is teaching students at a young age to divide amongst ourselves the vaccinated and the unvaccinated. This is something I and many others refuse to stand for. Students of LDSS and Cardinal Carter have already started our walkout protest and until this mandate is changed, we will not stop.
Our protests are peaceful and non-destructive. The only purpose behind these protests is to make school sports and all extra-curricular activities accessible to everyone, all races, all religions, and all students regardless of their vaccine status. We are anti-division and anti-segregation. This is not a pro or against vaccine protest, this protest is for the respect and rights that everyone deserves based on their decision to be vaccinated or not.
The basis of my findings was that Tony Omar deflected responsibility onto Todd Awender, the superintendent of education that oversees inter-school sports.
I wondered: how did he decide that declaring vaccination status to partake in extra curricular would be mandatory instead of encouraged?
The Ontario government's Health and Safety Operational Guidance document clearly states that they encourage school boards to work with local public health units to reach out to families and promote vaccination.
Does promote mean mandate? And how does this mandate align with students that are feeling left out and robbed of opportunity, in spite of the school boards own policy to provide a safe, caring and accepting school environment?
It appears that schools and school boards are still hindering students learning potential nearly two years into an alleged global pandemic that isn’t actually an emergency for this age demographic.