Higher education establishments, whether Francophone or Anglophone, are one of the pillars of our social and economic development. We firmly believe that these institutions’ vitality is beneficial to Quebec as a whole and that they have an essential role to play in the promotion and protection of our official language.
The presence of the English language, particularly in terms of academic publications, must be balanced with our responsibility to ensure that Quebecers can undertake higher studies in French, including by prioritizing access to French-language learning materials.
We believe that higher learning establishments, Francophone and Anglophone alike, need to be active partners in the promotion and protection of the French language. It is important to give them all the room they need to manoeuvre in this regard. Our approach reflects the importance of these institutions’ contributions to the vitality of our common language.
We therefore propose to:
Financially support CEGEPs and universities to allow them to offer free French courses on campus to all students who want to perfect their command of the language;
Enhance the number of courses offered in French at Anglophone colleges. This course offer should not be limited to second language French classes, but be encouraged through offering at least three courses in French within each program of study;
Offer students enrolled in Anglophone establishments the opportunity of developing French immersion cultural exchange programs or internships in Francophone communities;
Ensure that Quebecers from English-speaking communities have access to Anglophone CEGEPs;
Maintain the current number of full-time equivalent students in English-language CEGEPs.
The proposals we are advancing are the result of thorough reflection following several consultations.
In order to undertake this process, we first identified the fundamental principles that should guide us. It was important for us to identify the foundations upon which all Quebecers of all origins could readily unite and rally.