In an increasingly multicultural Canada, what are teachers' perspectives on the division between church and state inside of Canadian public schools?
Since 1982, provinces and territories across Canada have made changes from heavily religious entrenched school systems to those that are now touted as being entirely non- religious structures. This pedagogical transformation, required schools to adopt and advance a curriculum wide view and study of religion that, using Quebec as an example, is not based on proselytizing or promoting a single perspective, but rather on students' and teachers' ability to use their analytical skills to critically and respectfully examine both religious and secular viewpoints.
The purpose of the SSHRC funded study is to examine the perceptions of teachers within Canadian public schools who define themselves as "secularist" (atheist, agnostic, spiritual, religious, or otherwise) concerning the mandated secular nature of their province's education system. We would like to develop a “picture” of public schools across Canada as relates to secular mandates through the daily experiences of teachers who have adopted this professional stance. By recruiting teachers from each province and territory, we expect to better understand how our schools function in relation to secularism.