POLITICS
07/12/2018 17:22 EDT | Updated 07/13/2018 11:27 EDT

Ontario Turns Back Time To 1998 With Sex-Ed Curriculum Change

You will feel old after reading this 20-year flashback.

Ontario Premier Doug Ford applauds as Lt.-Gov. Elizabeth Dowdeswell delivers the speech from the throne to open the new legislative session at the Ontario Legislature at Queen's Park in Toronto on June 12, 2018.
Frank Gunn/The Canadian Press
Ontario Premier Doug Ford applauds as Lt.-Gov. Elizabeth Dowdeswell delivers the speech from the throne to open the new legislative session at the Ontario Legislature at Queen's Park in Toronto on June 12, 2018.

The announcement was expected.

Ontario's Progressive Conservative government announced Wednesday that the province's sex-ed curriculum, updated in 2015, will be replaced. In the mean time, the old curriculum — a version from 1998 — will be taught to kids.

Doug Ford campaigned on a promise to scrap the revamped curriculum, which included new classroom discussions on topics including consent, same-sex marriages, online bullying, and sexting.

They're examples of conversations that have become mainstream in the last 20 years — but they won't be reflected in the Ontario curriculum when students head back to school in September.

Twenty years. A lot has happened in that time.

1998: Sam Oosterhoff celebrated his 1st birthday

Christopher Katsarov/The Canadian Press
Sam Oosterhoff speaks to members of the media before he is sworn in as the youngest-ever member of the Ontario legislature in Toronto on Nov. 30, 2016. He was 19 at the time.

And now the Tory MPP is Ontario's new parliamentary assistant to the minister of education.

1999: Ricky Martin embarks on a successful solo career

Sam Mircovich / Reuters
Singer Ricky Martin poses with his Grammy Award for Best Latin Pop Performance for "Vuelve" at the Shrine Auditorium on Feb. 24 at the 1999 Grammy Awards in Los Angeles.

2000: People realize the Y2K bug, aka Millennium Bug, was NBD

Reuters Photographer / Reuters
Stock traders wearing Y2K glasses celebrate at the last trading day 1999, where closed up with the historic record of 17,091 points, in the floor of Sao Paulo's Stock Exchange on Dec. 30, 1999.

The world survives with its computer networks intact.

2001: Destiny's Child drops "Bootylicious"

2002: "The Osbournes" premiered on MTV

Getty Images via Getty Images
Ozzy Osbourne and wife Sharon, kids Jack, and Kelly are shown in this undated photo. "The Osbournes" premiered on March 5, 2002. MTV describes it as television's first "reality sitcom."

You can thank the "Prince of Darkness" for ushering in a new age of reality TV.

2003: Mark Zuckerberg launches Facemash

Facemash was the precursor to Facebook that allowed users to rate a same-sex lineup of people on their attractiveness.

2004: "The Apprentice" premieres on ABC

Reuters Photographer / Reuters
Real estate magnate Donald Trump talks to reporters while appearing at a casting call for the second season of his NBC show "The Apprentice" in New York on March 18, 2004.

2005: Canada legalizes same-sex marriage

Tom Hanson/The Canadian Press
Deputy Prime Minister Anne McLellan and Prime Minister Paul Martin sit in the front row as Liberal MPs John McKay, Paul Szabo and Roy Cullen (standing left to right) vote with Conservative Party leader Stephen Harpers motion on same sex marriage legislation in the House of Commons in Ottawa on April 12, 2005. MPs voted down the Conservative motion that would have derailed the minority Liberal government's same-sex marriage bill.

The Civil Marriage Act became law on July 20, 2005, making Canada the first country outside Europe to legalize same-sex marriage.

2006: Astronomers strip Pluto's "planet" status

dottedhippo via Getty Images
Artist's illustration of Pluto.

Your planetary ruse was up, Pluto.

2007: Apple releases its first-generation iPhone

SHAUN CURRY via Getty Images
Chief Executive Officer of Apple, Steve Jobs attends a press conference in central London on Sept. 18, 2007.

The U.K. released a report the same year, warning that the number of children victimized by cyberbullying doubled in year.

2008: Canadian release of the iPhone

Mark Blinch / Reuters
Jordon Brown, the first buyer of the new Apple iPhone 3G in Toronto, shows off his phone July 11, 2008.

Rogers becomes the first telecom provider to carry the new smartphone.

2009: Study suggests 59 per cent of Ontario teens have had sex

Richard Buchan/The Canadian Press
Teenagers check out an image on a digital camera, Gore Bay, Manitoulin Island, Ont. on July 16, 2009.

A study commissioned by Planned Parenthood and three Ontario universities recommended educators create a "school environment and sexual health curriculum that challenges transphobia and homophobia and that is inclusive of sexually diverse students."

2010: Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir win Olympic gold

AI Project / Reuters
Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir pose with their gold medals during victory ceremonies on Feb. 22, 2010 at the Vancouver Olympic Winter Games.

It was the first time North Americans had done so in the history of the ice dance program.

2011: Senate page Brigette DePape holds her silent protest

Sean Kilpatrick/The Canadian Press
Page Brigette DePape stands in the middle of the floor of the Senate as Governor General David Johnston delivers the Speech from the Throne in the Senate Chamber on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on June 3, 2011.

DePape unrolled a sign that read "Stop Harper" during the 41st Parliament's Speech from the Throne.

"I felt I needed to do it because I felt really discouraged and disempowered by the direction the government was headed and feeling like it's really going against the interests of the majority of people in this country," she told CTV News at the time.

2012: Amanda Todd's death makes online bullying an international discussion

2013: Rehtaeh Parsons' death prompts national conversation about online bullying and sexual assault

The Halifax teen died after being hospitalized after attempting suicide following being bullied online. Her family said pictures of the teen being sexually assaulted at a party were circulated at her school.

2014: The Ontario government launches province-wide consultations to update its sex-ed curriculum

Mark Blinch / Reuters
Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne applauds Ontario Finance Minister Charles Sousa as the provincial budget is distributed at Queens Park in Toronto on May 1, 2014.

They surveyed 4,000 parents of elementary school children about proposed changes, plus educators and experts.

2015: Abortion pill Mifegymiso is approved for use in Canada

Charlie Neibergall/The Canadian Press via AP
File photo of bottles of the abortion-inducing drug RU-486 in Des Moines, Iowa on Sept. 22, 2010.

On top of Health Canada giving the OK on the new abortion drug Mifegymiso (RU-486), 2015 is also the same year the federal government's cyberbully law (Bill C-13) also came into effect.

2016: Ontario begins teaching its new sex-ed curriculum

2017: Canada's gender identity bill becomes law and #MeToo becomes a movement

Chris Wattie / Reuters
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau speaks during a pride flag raising ceremony on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on June 14, 2017.

2018: Doug Ford's Ontario's PCs win a majority government

Carlo Allegri / Reuters
Progressive Conservative leader Doug Ford attends his election night party with his wife Karla Ford and their daughters following the provincial election in Toronto on June 7, 2018.

The former Toronto councillor's win ended 15 years of Liberal rule in Ontario.

On Wednesday, the first official day of the new PC government, Education Minister Lisa Thompson formally announced the decision to repeal the revised sex-ed curriculum. The move drops classroom discussions about social changes that have changed human behaviour over the past two decades.

"The sex-ed component is going to be reverted back to the manner in which it was prior to the changes that were introduced by the Liberal government," she said, prompting Ontarians to shake their heads and wonder if the last 20 years was all a dream.

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