Race and Fear of the ‘Other’ in Common Sense Revolution Reforms

Laura Elizabeth Pinto

Abstract


During the 1990s, Ontario experienced significant social policy reform under the Progressive-Conservative government’s controversial, but straightforward, platform called the Common Sense Revolution (CSR), promising to solve Ontario’s economic problems with lower taxes, smaller government and pro-business policies intended to create jobs. The ideological framing led to policy direction which dismantled existing provincial policies and institutions designed to promote equity. This paper begins by providing evidence to support how the CSR functioned as racist across a broad swath of policy areas, through ideology and coded language, structure and program cuts, and processes. Based on interviews with sixteen policy actors, the paper reveals how the provincial curriculum policy formulation process overtly overlooked and dismantled anti-racism and social justice in curriculum policy.

Keywords


Race; Education Policy; Curriculum; Social Justice; Canada; Ontario; Democracy; Common Sense Revolution; Racism; Ideology; Anti-racism

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ISSN 1920-4175 Critical Education