Think of your grandchildren before you send your kids to French school

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by admin on March 17, 2010

The Editor,

In response to your editorial “The perils of sending your kid to French school”, March 10 edition: to take your concern regarding Bill 101 a step further, anglo Quebeckers whose children would be eligible for admission in English schools and choose French schools are ensuring their grandchildren are ineligible for English education in Quebec – how’s that for the long view on Bill 101?

Families who choose English education are a struggling and sometimes too-silent minority. There is politics in language here, whether we acknowledge it in our day-to-day lives or not. Now is a particularly good time if voters in Quebec feel strongly about the right to English education.

The Charest government was given one year by the Supreme Court of Canada (from October 2009) to address the loophole that gave families access to English education if a child attended English private school in Quebec. Pressure is strong from French language advocacy groups to close that loophole altogether, rather than expand it. The number of students affected under this loophole is roughly 500 in the greater Montreal area; much, much less here. Not a significant number of kids out of the French school system to really matter. Until you realize it’s not about kids, it’s about politics.

Send an email to our MNA Mme. Stephanie Vallée at svallee-gati@assnat.qc.ca to express your opinion about access to English education. Check the Quebec English School Board Association (QESBA) website as well for more information.

Locally and on a positive note, Wakefield Elementary School has reversed the trend on declining enrollment for several years now. Hadley Junior High School offers a multitude of enrichment opportunities, and is considering a pilot of the Sports/Arts programming previously only available in French schools. Our kids have a bright future because of excellent English education, and we have a responsibility to ensure it remains an option for their children.

Diane Carman

Parent representative

Hadley JHS Governing Board

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