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Constitutional Law Mock Appeal Scenario: Doyle v Minto

This resource, originally from the OJEN Fall 2012 Charter Challenge, deals with an application by the Minto Catholic District School Board to have several sections of the Safe Schools for All Act declared unconstitutional. This legislation requires all schools to allow student-run clubs focused on issues related to sexual orientation and gender identity and explicitly mandates that students are allowed to choose the name of such clubs, including the use of the name Gay-Straight Alliance. When Sean Doyle’s requests to form such a club and to bring a controversial speaker on issues of Catholicism and sexuality to his school are denied, he obtains judicial orders overturning these decisions. The school board’s appeal deals with s. 93 (1) of the Constitution and ss. 2(a), 2(b) and 15 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

About the Charter Challenge

As Ontario’s only provincial appellate-level mock hearing, the Charter Challenge has students prepare arguments of Charter issues raised on appeal. While researching their arguments, students have the opportunity to connect online with other students around the province, as well as with lawyer mentors. Their factums are reviewed and finalist teams have the opportunity to argue the issue before a Court of Appeal judge, either in person or through video-conferencing.

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