Quebec's Liberal party is playing politics with my son's education
The Liberal Party's amendment to Quebec's Bill 96, the controversial overhaul of French-language laws, could force anglophone CEGEP students to take three core courses in French or three French-language courses starting in 2023 or 2024.
I voted for a party -- and MNA -- that traditionally fought for the rights of Outaouais' communities. Now they have kneecapped my son’s future as he embarks on his last year of high school.
The Liberals have betrayed all their supporters. Their Bill 96 amendment will have harmful consequences for all local communities . They hope we don’t realize it until their MNAs get re-elected. Pontiac MNA André Fortin, who has fought for this region, must show full transparency on the amendment's impacts.
He and his party leader need to drop the rhetoric that the Coalition Avenir Québec won’t let the party change its own backstabbing amendment.
As for my son, rather than properly educated, he will now be part of a great experiment, implemented without any input from education experts. This is cruel, and feels like right-wing identity politics. It feels “Trumpy.” Indigenous leaders in Quebec are calling the changes "colonial" and damaging to their youth.
I grew up proud of my province of birth. Now, many people speak to me like I am not a native of this province. Why? Because I learned French as a second language.
All Quebec parties voted for the amendment that will hurt my son’s ability to prosper. CAQ is freezing English CEGEP seats at 2019 levels despite the population boom in our region. Close to 50 per cent of English CEGEP students are francophones, wanting to learn English. We had 500 new English high-school students in the region this past year.
Education experts are clear: our kids’ success will be impeded. The brightest students will have their ability to compete for university hindered, and those who struggle will fall out of the system. If the CAQ wanted to support bilingualism, this reform would begin in the first year of school, preparing students along the way.
Despite generations of my family being born in Québec, we are now labelled historic anglophones. My son’s 12 years in Quebec’s public education have not prepared him for this abrupt change in curriculum.
What does the Liberal Party say about this colossal gaffe? It is too busy campaigning for the fall election! Even after this direct hit to our region, Fortin and provincial Liberal leader Dominique Anglade were in Chelsea last week, welcoming a new candidate for the party.
These laws threaten to divide our thriving bilingual communities. On est des Québécois, mais nous ne sommes pas les bienvenus.