School buildingThe Ministry of Education (EDU) is one of 15 Ontario ministries that is required under the Environmental Bill of Rights, 1993 (EBR) to include the public in its environmentally significant decision making. Click on a heading below to learn about the Ministry of Education and its EBR requirements and performance.

 

 

Key Environmental Aspects of the Ministry's Mandate

The Ministry of Education (EDU) administers the system of publicly funded elementary and secondary school education in Ontario. The ministry has committed to prepare students with the knowledge and skills required to be environmentally responsible citizens.

Environmental Bill of Rights (EBR) Requirements

Statement of Environmental Values

Each ministry that is prescribed under the Environmental Bill of Rights (EBR) is required to develop a Statement of Environmental Values to guide ministry staff when making decisions that might significantly affect the environment. Read the Statement of Environmental Values of the Ministry of Education (EDU).

Public Notice and Consultation

Each ministry that is prescribed under the EBR is required to consult the public on certain environmentally significant proposals via the Environmental Registry. Specifically, the EDU must give notice of, and consult on, any proposal to make or amend a policy or act that could have a significant effect on the environment.

Applications for Review 

Under the EBR, members of the public can ask the Ministry of Education to review the need for a new environmental policy, act or regulation. In addition, the public may ask the ministry to review any of the EDU's existing environmental policies.

The Ministry of Education is required to consider all such requests, and to respond within 60 days of receiving the application to let both the applicants and the Environmental Commissioner of Ontario know whether or not it will undertake the requested review.

Applications for Investigation

Under the EBR, members of the public can ask certain ministries to investigate alleged contraventions of certain acts, regulations and instruments. The Ministry of Education does not administer any acts that are prescribed under the Environmental Bill of Rights for Applications for Investigation.

EBR Commitment Letter

In December 2015, the ECO invited prescribed ministries to renew their commitment to the EBR in writing. Read the Ministry of Education's recommitment to the Environmental Bill of Rights.

EBR Report Card

The Environmental Commissioner of Ontario’s evaluation of ministry compliance with the Environmental Bill of Rights during the reporting period from April 1, 2017 to March 31, 2018

Ministry of Education (EDU)

ECO Comment: The EDU has a low EBR workload. There was little material with which the ECO could evaluate the EDU’s execution of its EBR responsibilities in 2017/2018, as the ministry did not post any notices on the Environmental Registry. However, the ECO commends the EDU for voluntarily considering an EBR application for review – before the ministry was legally required to do so – asking it to improve Ontario’s school curriculum with regard to sustainable food systems and the nutrition guidelines used in schools. The EDU also co-operated by providing information requested by the ECO’s climate change team, but the ECO urges the EDU to respond to our requests for information more promptly in 2018/2019.

Category
Result
Trend
Comments
Quality of notices for policies, acts and regulations posted on the Environmental Registry
N/A
N/A
The EDU did not post any policy, act or regulation notices in 2017/2018.
Quality of notices for instruments posted on the Environmental Registry
The EDU is not required to post instrument notices on the Environmental Registry.
Promptness of posting decision notices on the Environmental Registry
N/A
N/A
The EDU did not post any decision notices in 2017/2018.
Keeping notices on the Environmental Registry up to date
N/A
N/A
The EDU did not have any open proposals on the Environmental Registry at the end of 2017/2018.
Handling of Applications for Review and Investigation
N/A
N/A
The EDU became prescribed for receiving applications for review in September 2017. The ministry did not conclude any applications for review under the EBR in 2017/2018 after it was prescribed.
Avoiding overdue applications for review
N/A
N/A
The EDU did not have any open applications for review under the EBR at the end of 2017/2018.
Considering Statements of Environmental Values (SEVs)
N/A
N/A
The ECO did not request proof of SEV consideration from the EDU in 2017/2018.
Co-operation with ECO Requests
No Change in Trend icon
The ECO had limited contact with the EDU in 2017/2018, but the ministry did respond to a request from the ECO’s climate change team to explain how the ministry incorporates climate change considerations into its decision making. The ministry’s response to that request was tardy; the ECO encourages the EDU to respond promptly to the ECO’s information requests in 2018/2019.
Legend

Quality of Performance

Meets or exceeds expectations and legal obligations
Needs improvement
Unacceptable: failure to comply with legal obligations and/or frustrating environmental rights granted to the public by the EBR
Not prescribed for this category of EBR performance
N/A
Not applicable (the ministry did not carry out any responsibilities under this category in 2017/2018)

Trend

Overall quality of performance has improved since 2016/2017 icon
Overall quality of performance has improved since 2016/2017
Overall quality of performance unchanged since 2016/2017 icon
Overall quality of performance unchanged since 2016/2017
Overall quality of performance has declined since 2016/2017 icon
Overall quality of performance has declined since 2016/2017
 
Not prescribed for this category of EBR performance
N/A
Not applicable (the ministry did not carry out any responsibilities under this category in 2016/2017)

Key Outstanding ECO Recommendations

In our annual reports, the ECO makes recommendations to improve EBR compliance and environmental protection. The Ministry of Education does not have any outstanding ECO recommendations.

ECO Recognition Award

Since 2000, the annual ECO Recognition Award has recognized the hard work of ministry staff in an initiative that benefits Ontario’s environment and meets the goals of the EBR. Every year, the ECO asks prescribed ministries to submit programs and projects to be considered for the award. The Ministry of Education has not yet been the recipient of the ECO Recognition Award.

Return to Top