AQED encourages a positive and constructive attitude in your relations with the DEM and the School Boards (SB) or School Services Centers (SSC). It is beneficial to both parties that the relationship be one of open exchange and respect, aligned towards the common goal: the well-being of our children.
However, if you find yourself in conflict with the person responsible for monitoring your file (PR) and you are unable to find common ground, you can communicate your complaint to the general address of the DEM (dem [at] education.gouv.qc.ca).
If you find yourself in conflict regarding the services provided by your SB or SSC, you can ask your PR to intervene. If the situation is not resolved, you can file a complaint with the Student Ombudsman.
AQED offers support and guidance to its members. It is recommended that you join AQED at the beginning of your homeschooling journey, and that you contact us at the first sign of problem or conflict.
In the event of an impasse, there are options available for asserting your rights:
The interpretation and implementation of government policies and laws would be difficult, if not impossible, if administrative tribunals did not exist. While courts adjudicate disputes between citizens, administrative tribunals usually resolve disputes between citizens and the state. The primary function of this branch of law is to ensure that laws are implemented and enforced in a fair and reasonable manner. It is based on the principle that government action, in all its forms, is lawful and that citizens aggrieved by unlawful government actions have effective remedies. The first section of the Act Respecting Administrative Justice in Québec states that "The purpose of this Act is to affirm the specific character of administrative justice, to ensure its quality, promptness and accessibility and to safeguard the fundamental rights of citizens.”
The DEM is called upon to make administrative decisions in the context of the monitoring it carries out with homeschooling families, such as the closing of a file. If you believe that the DEM has made a mistake in a decision concerning your file, you can, in a great number of cases, turn to the Tribunal administratif du Québec (TAQ). The TAQ was created to facilitate access to administrative justice, while offering guarantees of impartiality. It is there to hear the parties and its decisions are generally final and without appeal.
The CDPDJ receives complaints from any person or group of persons who believe that they are victims of discrimination or harassment—based on one of the grounds prohibited by the Charter—and that this situation prevents them from fully exercising their rights in one of the areas protected by the Charter (e.g.: refusal by the SB/SSC to provide accommodations during examinations or refusal to provide services to children up to the age of 18).
The Québec Ombudsman handles complaints about all Québec government departments, including the Ministère de l'Éducation.
Any party to a youth protection or adoption file, whether parent, child or other party, may be counseled and represented by a lawyer of his choice. In order to better serve clients in these matters, a daily referral service was created by the Association of lawyers specializing in youth law, in collaboration with the Barreau du Québec. Every week-day, between 8:30 a.m. and 4:00 p.m., on-duty counsels are present in room 105 of the Court of Quebec, Youth Division, (located at 410 Bellechasse Street East in Montreal), in order to meet with and, if necessary, represent any person who requires the services of a lawyer in this legal domain.
To contact the assistance service for youth protection and adoption matters, dial 514 278-1738.
The only way to force a homeschooled child to return to school against his or her will is by a judgment from the Youth Court following, among other things, a declaration of educational neglect by the Director of Youth Protection (DYP).