Holding the Bag

Holding the Bag
Posted on 01/17/2019

Last month, Ms. Jerreat’s grade 5’s were studying Canadian government and the Rights and Responsibilities of Canadians. One day they chatted about which Right was the best. The right to a fair trial under the law; the right to free education and basic healthcare; and the right to participate in choosing the government were all suggested. The right to peacefully protest was the one favoured one particular day.

“Students have these rights as well,” added their teacher.

“Plastic!” exclaimed Lily. “We have to do something about all the plastic!” she said. “Look at the islands of it in the oceans!” Then they were off and running.

All the grade 5 students from three classrooms listened to Derek Ochej, an excellent speaker from City Hall, describe how a local school had created a peaceful protest that succeeded with City Hall. Ms. Jerreat’s grade 4/5 class decided right then to write a petition to Kingston City Hall to ban single-use plastic shopping bags. Victoria and Montreal have done it, as has Spain.

The next speaker for all the grade 5s was a former MPP, Sophie Kiwala, who was impressed by their idea. She asked them, “Why not Ontario, too?” She offered to assist and to edit their petition into the legal style necessary. The students could essentially write a potential law for Ontario, and it would get read at Queen’s Park and debated!

To say that the students were excited about this would be an understatement. Thus, after much student research, collaboration, discussion, writing, and editing, here are the twin petitions, written by Ms. Jerreat’s grade 4/5 class with all the 5s at Elginburg D.P.S. We sincerely hope that everyone will print a copy or two, bring them to family and friends, and then send them to the correct places.

The Kingston petition should be sent back to Ms. Jerreat at Elginburg DPS and the Ontario petition should be sent to MPP Nathalie Des Rosiers at Queen’s Park. (Local people are welcome to return both petitions to EDPS.) Each petition states that information on it.

As well, if you use social media, please send the students’ Ontario petition far and wide across

Ontario!  Thank you for helping us to make Kingston and Ontario a healthier place to live!

Deadline:  Please send all petitions to EDPS or Queen’s Park by Earth Day, April 22nd, 2019

Banning plastic Kingston.pdf

Banning plastic Ontario.pdf