Education Minister Bernard Drainville announced on Tuesday the launch of a “general inquiry” into the multiple allegations of sex crimes that have occurred in the school system over the past few months.
Mr. Drainville made the announcement in the afternoon, in response to a question from solidarity Ruba Ghazal, saying that the investigation will follow up on “multiple denunciations and allegations of misconduct of a sexual nature or inappropriate behavior brought to the attention” of his ministry in recent months.
In his speech, the Minister notably cited the case of the Center de services scolaire du Chemin-du-Roy, where the story of a teacher who had an affair with a teenager, who allegedly had a child by him, had made a lot of noise lately. Subsequently, the teacher in question would have fallen in love with another student with whom he would have had three children.
The latter finally recalled the case to the Center de services scolaire des Patriotes. A professor who had been convicted of pimping in the late 1990s was able to return to his teaching post there after serving his prison sentence.
If most of the service centers mentioned above are already the subject of a government investigation, the investigation launched on Tuesday will however have a “general scope”, argued Mr. Drainville. Officials from the internal affairs branch of his ministry will lead the investigation.
These officials will be required to submit their recommendations to the minister in a preliminary report no later than June 2. A final report is also expected by July 31. Quebec does not rule out having recourse to the Act respecting public inquiry commissions to obtain any document or information that would be relevant to the investigation.
“The designated persons will have to carry out a general inquiry into any situation involving behavior that could reasonably raise fears for the physical or psychological safety of students, including those that would be brought to the attention of the Ministry of Education during the course of this investigation. . This could of course include the Cowansville business, ”explained the minister.
He was referring to the English-language Massey-Vanier high school in Cowansville. On Monday, several students claimed Monday to be victims of frequent and repeated sexual violence by a boy from the school, attacking in passing the lack of action by the establishment.
In opposition, liberal Marwah Rizqy said on Tuesday that “this investigation is unfortunately necessary”. “You will have my full cooperation.” We must turn all the stones to understand this scourge and better protect young people in our schools. There is still a lot to do but every gesture counts,” she told the minister.
“Sexual assault in our schools is intolerable. An investigation was necessary. THE
In February 2022, five days after the arrest of three Saint-Laurent school coaches who were also charged with multiple sex crimes, a coalition called for the “swift and urgent” adoption of a bill to ” preventing and combating sexual violence in schools. More recently, last February, victims of sexual violence, workers and former athletes also called for an emergency meeting with Minister Drainville to speed things up.