Teachers’ Institute of Parliamentary Democracy (Part 1)

Hello Grade 9 Students! This week and weekend I will be meeting with a variety of MLAs, the Speaker of the House, Daryl Reid, and the Lt. Governor, Philip Lee. I will have the chance to chat them up and ask them some tough questions. What questions do you have for MLA James Allum, Philip Lee and Daryl Reid? Given the recent Manitoba Budget, what issues are pressing in this Province?

Drop me a few ideas here on the blog and I will keep you up to date via film, photos and my musings!

Legal versus Factual Innocence

Based on our conversation with David Asper today about the Stobbe case, do you think it is fair that Stobbe is found factually innocent? Do you agree with the idea that we have created a new verdict in Canada called “Not Proven Guilty”?

Please comment by Thursday and be sure to comment on the posts of your peers.

The Federal Budget

Last week, the Federal Government introduced its budget to the House of Commons. Jim Flaherty, the minister of Finance, had to make some serious decisions based on the global economy and the ideology of his political party. Here is a pretty cool summary developed by the Globe and Mail that explains where the Government has cut spending and where they will be increasing spending: Globe & Mail Infographic.

Once you are pretty comfortable with what has been cut and what has not, try your turn at creating a budget. How do you ensure the GDP remains consistent or better than that of other countries? Is this important? What should our priorities be? Try creating a budget using the Centre for Policy Alternatives software and then comment on what decisions you made. Please keep in mind that both Econ and Grade 9 students will be participating, so try and include everyone.

Please be sure to comment on the posts of others. Blogging must be completed by Wednesday, April 4th at 11:59 CST.

Trayvon Martin: Walking While Black

By now, most of you in our US History class will have heard of the Trayvon Martin murder which occurred in a Florida suburb on February 26th. As of last Friday (March 30th), his killer had not been arrested. Here is a great report from Democracy Now:

How do we begin to deconstruct and make sense of this event? How can we use history to help us understand how a young African-American could possibly be gunned down in the middle of the day? Here is a video from Democracy Now that attempts to compare the Civil Rights movement in the 20th century with this recent event:

Please comment on what has been posted before you and try to incorporate what you have learned about the racial divide in the United States to help shape your answer. Comments are due on April 5th at 9:00 AM.