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Kitchener school joins growing list of institutions being renamed in Waterloo Region

A R Kaufman Public School in Kitchener. Google Maps

Three schools in the area will soon have new names after the Waterloo Region District School Board passed a motion to rename a third on Monday night.

A R Kaufman Public School in Kitchener joins Ryerson Public School in Cambridge and Sir John A. Macdonald Secondary School in Waterloo on the list of schools which are to be renamed going forward.

A.R. Kaufman was identified “as a person who was drawn to the use of birth control as a eugenics measure or device,” superintendent Carissa Hill told the Board on Monday night before it voted on the measure.

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“The research revealed that Kaufman’s view was that the provision of cheap contraceptives would, and, I quote, ‘limit the unintelligent and penniless who unfortunately constitute an increasing percentage of the total population.’”

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She went on to say that Kaufman also arranged sterilizations for the poor.

A local YMCA building is also named after Kaufman whose family was involved in the rubber industry.

The process to change the name at Sir John A. Macdonald Secondary School is well underway while Monday night’s vote also finalized the plans to change the name of Ryerson Public School.

Hill said the move to rename the other schools is being made due to Macdonald and Ryerson’s involvement in the establishment of the Indian residential school system.

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