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Home » Troubling Religion and Secularism: Critical Religious and Creed Literacies in Ontario Schools

Troubling Religion and Secularism: Critical Religious and Creed Literacies in Ontario Schools

Presenter: Hiren Bhana Mistry

Workshop Description

  • In this workshop, participants will:Understand the shifting meaning of religion and secularism in schools at the levels of policy and practice
  • Unpack the ways religion, creed and secularism in schools have marginalized students, particularly those who have been systemically underserved
  • Explore tools and strategies to affirm student religious and creed identities to affirm student experiences, and uphold and balance rights protections in support of religion and creed


Hiren Bhana Mistry
Former Peel District School Board, Equity Resource Teacher
(Forthcoming) Vice Principal, Halton District School Board

Hiren Mistry is a 2nd generation Canadian with Hindu Gujarati roots. He has been in the field of education for over 20 years serving students and communities in different roles. He describes himself as a post 9/11 educator. He has applied insights from the critical study of religion into his pedagogy and practice as a classroom teacher and as a centrally assigned equity lead. He has spent a dedicated time in his roles as a teacher, curriculum head, centrally assigned equity coordinator and researcher listening to the ways that students articulate their understanding of religion, faith, identity and belonging. Hiren has over 15 years of experience connecting human rights theory to practice in public & higher education, with community groups and non-profit organizations. He is a former seconded lecturer at York University (Faculty of Education), and is currently completing his doctorate in Higher Education and Leadership at the University of Toronto (Ontario Institute for Studies in Education) focusing on the intersection of policy, religious diversity and leadership.