Contra/Diction: How Catholic Doublespeak in Canadian Catholic Secondary Schools Furthers Homophobia

Tonya D. Callaghan


The contradictions underlying the Catholic institutionalization of homophobia in publicly funded Canadian Catholic secondary schools show that many Catholic school districts in Canada are ignoring their legal, professional, and ethical responsibilities to protect all students and to maintain a safe, caring, and inclusive learning environment. This paper discusses the ways in which Catholic school boards tie their policies to the Vatican and sidestep progressive initiatives undertaken by teachers associations in favour of Catholic solutions to contemporary issues in schools. Hope for a more progressive climate in the Catholic secondary school setting can be found in queer Catholic youth activism occurring in secondary schools. This paper proposes that social justice can be learned and offers suggestions for educational stakeholders regarding policy change for particular Catholic educational contexts.


Canadian; Catholic; publicly funded; secondary schools; safe and caring schools; queer activism; educational policy; social justice

Full Text:


Canadian Online Journal of Queer Studies in Education/ Le journal canadien pour les tudes queer en ducation . ISSN: 1710-7598