February 27, 2017 · 0 Comments
The formalities of the Legislative Assembly of Ontario are steeped in parliamentarian tradition and protocol, and as an MPP, I am privileged to participate in the workings of our provincial government from the chamber floor.
On a daily basis, MPPs have the benefit of the services provided by the Legislative Page program. In Canada, pages have served in the Legislative Assembly for 150 years.
Pages work at Queen’s Park when the Legislative Assembly is in session. Daily duties required of a page include participating in the Speaker’s parade, delivering documents and messages to MPPs who are in the chamber, as well as assisting the Speaker, Clerk and Sergeant at Arms. In addition to page duties, students are required to continue their studies while serving at Queen’s Park.
Many students from Dufferin-Caledon have been a part of the page program. Some students from Dufferin-Caledon have stayed with family or friends in Toronto for the time they are in the page program, other families have arranged daily rides for their students who are selected.
In Ontario, the page program is offered to students in Grade 7 and 8 in Ontario, who have an 80 per cent grade average or higher and are involved in extra-curricular, community-based activities. Page applicants should show an interest in current affairs and have experiences that demonstrate responsibility, maturity and teamwork. Interested students need to fill out an application, get parental and school consent and write an essay.
Generating interest in civics is one of the benefits of the page program. I have heard from many former pages who treasure the experience of being a page because it is their first opportunity to participate in public service and be a part of provincial history.
For educators, there are a number of resources available, including curriculum-linked classroom information, programs and tours that help when discussing government, civics and history. As the MPP, I have met many school tours from Dufferin-Caledon at Queen’s Park and I have been invited to visit schools in our community to discuss the role of government. I enjoy meeting with students and answering their questions.
A link to the educational portal, programs and tours for schools, as well as the Page program, are available online through my website at www.sylviajonesmpp.ca
Students, parents or teachers with questions about this program or visiting Queen’s Park can contact me by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 1-800-265-1603.