School principal bans singing “O Canada” – in Canada

The Boyd sisters have been raised singing the national anthem every day, but a New Brunswick school has silenced their morning ritual.

These days, the only time Julia Boyd, 11, gets to belt out the anthem’s lyrics is at monthly school assemblies, other special occasions or at home with her older sister Kara. That’s because singing O Canada is no longer a daily morning event at Belleisle Elementary. The school’s principal has dropped it in response to concerns from other parents.

“It makes me sad, upset,” Julia said. “I didn’t feel very good about it.”

The change started more than a year ago, but their mother said she didn’t find out until Julia started forgetting some of the lyrics…

Erik Millett, principal of Belleisle Elementary School, said some parents complained about the singing of O Canada each day. The anthem is no longer a daily ritual, but he said perhaps the education minister should decide on a provincial solution. Erik Millett, principal of Belleisle Elementary School, said some parents complained about the singing of O Canada each day. The anthem is no longer a daily ritual, but he said perhaps the education minister should decide on a provincial solution.

Erik Millett, the school’s principal, said he made the decision partly to accommodate parents who didn’t want their children taking part in the daily anthem. He would not say why the parents didn’t want their kids taking part, citing privacy reasons.

Weird. I feel strongly about individual rights to choose – and all the way back to my own high school daze I refused to take part in school prayers when they were introduced. But, I never tried to force other students to do anything other than make up their own minds.

The same has always been true of archaic crap [to me] like national anthems. I wouldn’t ban their singing. Though I’d fight to the death for someone’s right not to participate. There has to be more to this story and I’d bet dollars to doughnuts there’s a religious kicker to the tale.

UPDATE: The principal’s decision has been reversed by the district super.

7 comments

  1. clancop

    Sent him an email myself. Not a fan of these “anti-patriots”. If you find out anything new, send something around. I want to keep my eyes on this story.

    http://clanop.wordpress.com

    P.S. I hope that twit Principle is fired and publicly humiliated for this swipe at Canada.

  2. David

    Singing O Canada every single morning? Sounds rather extreme to me. More like totalitarian. Definitely more American. Oh yeah, most of you would like that.

  3. neil johnson

    I strongly feel that removing the anthem is so wrong If parents don’t like the country they became part of they can go back to where they came from. our anthem is Canada and this is where we live. That is just the way it is. End of story. WOW. I am ashamed to see what the country I grew to love so much has turned to this. I know dam well if i moved to one of these other country’s they are not going to change there way of life for me. I’ll probably get shot. Shake you head people. CANADA

    • Mr. Fusion

      And you are in grade … ?

      Niel, when I went to school in Canada we learned a little grammar. Maybe that should be a more important part of your make-up than jingoism.

    • Jägermeister

      “If parents don’t like the country they became part of they can go back to where they came from.”

      I might have missed a row or two in the article, but where did it say that it was immigrants complaining about O’Canada? What would you do if it’s French separatists (after all, we’re talking about New Brunswick) or First Nations people? Gas them?

  4. Mr. Fusion

    Back in the olden days, I first attended a one room school in Southern Ontario. Yup, 1 1/2 miles uphill each way, usually with up to 5 feet of snow and seldom less than 2 feet. If it was too deep for the caribou to pull the sleigh we had to walk. If we were lucky a giant eagle would carry us off and drop us at the school.

    We all wore our Maple Leaf toques we got from the General Store in downtown Toronto. Hell’s wrath to anyone wearing a Montreal Canadiens toque. And often a black eye too.

    And every morning old Mrs Black would have us recite the Lord’s prayer then sing our national anthem. And our national anthem back then wasn’t O Canada. Oh how the ingrates today forget that; or didn’t even know it wasn’t the official anthem until 1980. That was after the first Quebec Referendum.

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