Document Type

Article

Publication Date

Fall 2016

Department

Social Justice and Community Engagement

Department

Social Justice and Community Engagement

Abstract

Low German Speaking (LGS) Mennonites have had a tumultuous relationship with Canadian educational institutions in the past, resulting in many from the community migrating to Mexico in the 1920s. Since the 1950s, LGS Mennonites from Mexico and South America have been migrating back to Canada, with over 40,000 making their homes in Ontario. Many in Ontario, however, still have misgivings about public education. With such a large presence in Ontario, Ontario schools need to make sure that they are inclusive places for this minority group. This MRP utilizes open-ended interviews to hear the experiences and views of Low German Speaking (LGS) Mennonite men in alternative education programs in Ontario. This MRP uncovers a better understanding of LGS Mennonite views, both positive and negative, about alternative education programs, as well as their views on mainstream education, and their desire for private schools. It also sheds light on the needs of teachers in these alternative programs, and provides recommendations for the programs. By having a better understanding of LGS Mennonite views on alternative education programs and education in general, schools can become places that LGS students and their families regard as inclusive, safe, and reflective of their unique experiences and identity.