McGuinty won't weigh in on bibles in public school
TORONTO — Critics say Dalton McGuinty, Ontario's self-proclaimed "education premier," should be willing to take a stand on handing out bibles to students in public schools and on a new school for low-income kids.
"I think it was Bill Davis who once said the provincial government doesn't have to have an opinion on everything," said McGuinty, a Liberal premier, in a rare quote of a former Conservative premier.
The Waterloo Region public school board is seeking a legal opinion on its policy of allowing Gideons International, an evangelical Christian group, to give bibles to students in Grade 5 whose parents have signed a permission slip.
The policy has raised concerns about distributing religious materials through the public school system. The "Little Red Answer Book" distributed by Gideons includes the New Testament and the Hebrew Bible books of Proverbs and Psalms, which critics say include proselytizing statements in violation of the board's policy.
Despite the ongoing debate, the premier refused to take a stand on the issue.
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