Polak was involved in lengthy and expensive court case

MLA, when chair of Surrey School Board, was involved in lengthy lawsuit that ended up in the Supreme Court of Canada.

Editor: Re: The resignation of Todd Hauptman, Mary Polak’s campaign manager.

Hauptman was a teen and possibly politically out of touch when Polak chaired the Surrey School Board.

An issue arose, beginning in 1997, and ran to at least 2002. She was chair when the board voted 4 to 2 to censor its teachers.

Surrey teachers quite properly attempted to introduce the two-dad, two-mom family concept to their elementary students. It was to be accomplished in storybook form, about two-mom and two-dad familes.

One teacher, James Chamberlain, chose to take the board to court. He went all the way to the Supreme Court of Canada, at a huge cost to Surrey taxpayers, Chamberlain and B.C. Teachers Federation.

In the end, student education prevailed. The Supreme Court of Canada held that a local school board could not impose its religious values by refusing to permit the use of books that sought to promote tolerance of same-sex relationships.

The case is filed under Chamberlain v. Surrey District School Board No.36 (2002)4S.C.R.710, 2002 SCC 86.


Larri Woodrow,

Walnut Grove

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