October 5, 2023

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Former scholar of Christian college asks schooling minister to shut it

Former scholar of Christian college asks schooling minister to shut it

Former college students of Legacy Christian Academy met with Training Minister Dustin Duncan on Wednesday.

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Pleading for extra motion after what she and others allege has been many years of abuse, a former scholar at a Christian college in Saskatoon has instantly requested Saskatchewan’s schooling minister to shut the college.

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Caitlin Erickson was amongst three former college students of Legacy Christian Academy — as soon as often called Christian Centre Academy — who met with Training Minister Dustin Duncan and ministry officers on Wednesday.

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The assembly included the scholars’ lawyer, Grant Scharfstein. Erickson is lead plaintiff in a $25-million class motion towards Legacy Christian Academy and Mile Two Church.

Erickson mentioned the group offered Duncan and deputy minister Donna Johnson particular examples and proof of their allegations, and she or he instantly requested Duncan to shut the college. He didn’t commit in some way, she mentioned.

“We recognize them assembly with us, however there’s a lot that has gone on at that establishment. We’re speaking about, proper now, 4 many years of abuse victims which have come ahead,” Erickson mentioned in an interview.

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“I don’t assume anyone desires their legacy because the sitting schooling minister (to be) a fifth decade of abuse victims.”

The ministry confirmed the assembly passed off, saying in an e mail that it was a followup to a gathering between former college students and an appointed administrator at Legacy Christian Academy.

“Whereas the Ministry of Training has not been named within the lawsuit, it’ll proceed to watch this case because it strikes by means of the authorized course of,” the province mentioned in an announcement.

Education Minister Dustin Duncan.
Training Minister Dustin Duncan. Picture by TROY FLEECE /Regina Chief-Publish

It famous it has carried out directors at three faculties named within the lawsuit, and that’s “enhancing the laws and oversight of the faculties, and totally cooperating with the Advocate for Kids and Youth in its investigation into the oversight of Unbiased Faculties in Saskatchewan.”

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Erickson mentioned the dialog on Wednesday was one-sided, with former college students and their lawyer doing many of the speaking.

“They did plenty of listening, which we recognize, however having that a lot details about this case, we have been hoping for somewhat extra from them so far as what they’re going to do to stop this taking place sooner or later,” she mentioned.

Scharfstein mentioned the scholars have been ready and known as it a step in the fitting course.

“I’ve little question (Duncan) heard what we needed to say. Can I inform what’s going to come of it? I can’t. I don’t know. However they actually know what the problems are,” he mentioned.

The previous college students’ claims aren’t political, because the “whole failure of this ministry” occurred underneath NDP, Conservative and Saskatchewan Occasion governments, Scharfstein added.

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“We wished to make it clear there was a complete failure to guard these youngsters’s pursuits, each academically, primarily based on the curriculums being taught and who was instructing, in addition to the abuse points that arose in these faculties,” he mentioned.

Saskatoon police have confirmed {that a} felony investigation into the allegations is happening.

Legacy Christian Academy and its father or mother group, Mile Two Church, didn’t reply to a request for remark.

Legacy Christian Academy shares the same building as Mile Two Church, which is located in Saskatoon’s Lawson Heights neighbourhood.
Legacy Christian Academy shares the identical constructing as Mile Two Church, which is situated in Saskatoon’s Lawson Heights neighbourhood. Picture by Michelle Berg /Saskatoon StarPhoenix

The category-action lawsuit alleges Legacy Christian Academy, previously often called Christian Centre Academy, and Mile Two Church perpetrated and allowed the spanking of scholars, fondling of minors by church workers and different bodily, psychological and sexual abuse.

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It names 21 individuals as defendants, together with former academics and directors. The allegations haven’t been examined in courtroom.

As of Friday, no statements of defence have been filed.

The ministry appointed directors in late August to supervise Legacy Christian Academy, Grace Christian Faculty in Saskatoon and Regent Christian Academy in Prince Albert.

Duncan revoked Grace Christian Faculty’s permission to function after the college’s director refused to co-operate with the administrator.

Legacy Christian Academy is assessed as a “certified impartial college” operated and owned by a non-profit group, however receives direct provincial funding. It now has to observe the provincial curriculum, however can provide domestically developed programs on the secondary stage authorised by the schooling ministry.

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In 2020-2021 it obtained $736,000 in provincial funds.

Caitlin Erickson is one of two lead plaintiffs in a $25 million class action against former staff at Legacy Christian Academy, as well as the school and the church that operates it.
Caitlin Erickson is considered one of two lead plaintiffs in a $25 million class motion towards former workers at Legacy Christian Academy, in addition to the college and the church that operates it. Picture by Michelle Berg /Saskatoon StarPhoenix

— With StarPhoenix information from Zak Vescera

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