Publisher: © Minister of Public Works and Government Services Canada 2019: The Office of the Commissioner of Official Languages contracted this study to Canadian Parents for French. The research team consisted of lead researchers and authors Mimi Masson and Elizabeth Jean Larson, as well as Paule Desgroseilliers, Wendy Carr and Sharon Lapkin. (www.officiallanguages.gc.ca)
Author: Masson, Mimil; Jean Larson, Elizabeth; Desgroseilliers, Paule; Carr, Wendy; Lapkin, Sharon
Hosted by: www.clo-ocol.gc.ca
Submitted by: yorkfsl
Date Submitted: April 12, 2021
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One of the main responsibilities of the Commissioner of Official Languages of Canada (the Commissioner) is to promote linguistic duality in Canadian society. To help meet this responsibility, the Commissioner raises Canadians’ awareness of the benefits of linguistic duality and carries out research, studies and public awareness activities to help inform all Canadians of the status and importance of Canada’s official languages.As a leader in official languages, the Commissioner takes great interest in the question of access to opportunities for Canadians to learn and to master their second official language. He recognizes that this is key to the continuing success of the Official Languages Act, the advancement of the equality of status and use of English and French in Canadian society, and the fostering of a bilingual public service that can work, and serve Canadians, in both languages.
The Commissioner recognizes that he has a role to play in helping to shed light on this challenge, and to contribute to the momentum that has begun to build in conversations among FSL stakeholders around strategies for addressing the challenge. Considering its mandate, and in light of the current context, the Office of the Commissioner commissioned Canadian Parents for French to assemble and manage a team of FSL education researchers and experts to conduct the present study.
The study objectives are to document and explore:
• the extent and nature of the FSL teacher supply and demand challenge and other factors that may be related to the challenges in accessing FSL education;
• current and possible measures that the Government of Canada along with different ministries of education, faculties of education and school boards could consider to help address the gap;
• factors inhibiting FSL education graduates from Canadian post-secondary institutions from taking up FSL teaching positions where there is a demand for their specialty, as well as considerations or initiatives that could encourage or motivate them to consider teaching in FSL programs where there is a need.
The present study provides a series of recommendations and suggestions for the federal minister responsible for official languages, who has a responsibility to work with provincial and territorial governments to provide opportunities for Canadians to learn both official languages. By doing so, the minister would demonstrate pan-Canadian leadership on this critical issue–an issue that crosses provincial and territorial boundaries and that is in need of a national and coordinated approach.
In addition, it is hoped that the study findings and conclusions will help stakeholders as they develop their strategies and project funding proposals and contribute to a sound implementation of this important part of the Government of Canada’s 2018-2023 Action Plan for Official Languages, so that we can all work together to improve access to bilingual education for English-speaking youth across Canada.
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