The Faculty of Education is keeping problems regarding faculty behind closed doors.
Two weeks ago, The Journal received a news tip that a group of fifth-year Concurrent Education (ConEd) students in the social justice teaching concentration raised concerns over a professor to the administration.
The alleged professor of social justice in the ConEd program, Julia Rebecca Hale, currently teaches the class FOCI 296A (Teaching For Social Justice), and is reportedly being replaced in November.
Hale was allegedly unaware of the concept of intersectionality, which raised concerns for students.
“Fostering of positive learning communities has been central to my practice throughout my career. As educators we’re always learning and I welcome any feedback from my students, in person or through a trusted advocate,” Hale said in a statement to The Journal.
Hale didn’t confirm or deny the allegations leveled against her. The Journal contacted Queen’s University, who didn’t provide comment.
In an effort to gain a comprehensive perspective, The Journal contacted four of the 38 ConEd students in the social justice class regarding the complaints about Hale, to which no student felt comfortable going on record.
Peter Chin, associate dean of the teacher education program, confirmed the Faculty of Education is dealing with human resources issues, in a statement to The Journal. Chin didn’t offer additional comments on the human resources matter, citing privacy concerns.
Christina Romualdi, president of the Education Student Society (ESS), is working with Chin to rectify the human resources issue.
The Journal reached out to President of the Concurrent Education Students’ Association (CESA), Megan McDowell, regarding the complaints and was referred to Romualdi as the issue pertained to students in their final year of ConEd.
In a statement to The Journal, Romualdi confirmed the ESS is aware of students’ complaints and is supporting and advocating for ConEd students at this time.
Romualdi initially agreed to an interview with The Journal but cancelled at the last minute, claiming she was taking the time to discuss the matter with other ESS executives instead.
When asked to confirm the allegations against Hale, Romualdi explained in an email the Faculty of Education is currently handling the matter and questions should be directed towards them.
“We’re currently gathering student experiences of those who are willing to share, and we will bring this matter up at our next meeting with the associate dean,” Romualdi said.
Romualdi didn’t respond to inquiries from The Journal regarding the scheduled date of her meeting with Chin or The Journal’s questions about the nature of students’ complaints.
Beyond the social justice concentration, ConEd students in the outdoor education teaching stream found their outdoor and experimental (OEE) trip cancelled due to its failure to comply with University safety protocols on Sept 12.
Chin didn’t confirm what protocols prevented the trip from moving forward.
“As always, if any impacted teacher candidates require further support, they’re encouraged to speak to their instructor, the Student Services Office, or the Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, and Decolonization Committee,” Chin said.
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