It is that time of the year again when packing bags and going back to school is the need of the hour. Many of you living in Ontario might be thinking of learning French and don’t know the specificities regarding it in the province.
Fear not, as we are here to help you out on that front! Here are 4 things you need to know about French education in Ontario.
1. Ontario school systems:
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As per the Ontario website, there are four publicly funded school systems, namely, French public, French Catholic, English public, and English Catholic. Also, there are twelve French language school boards, with more than 470 French-language elementary and secondary schools.
The goal of these schools is to adhere to a strict curriculum, taught exclusively in French!
Alliance française (AF), is another organization that also promotes the French language and francophone culture in Ontario. It is a worthy mention for this list.
Additionally, there is always the option for French online learning. Tumu Learning is one of them and the best part is, that you can learn anywhere you like. It adds to the convenience and does not compromise the quality of the French learning experience.
2. French-language school admissions:
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Did you know that parents holding French-language rights can automatically admit to French-language schools if they apply? Yes, that’s true!
A rights holder must be a Canadian citizen and a parent/guardian. They should also meet one of the criteria, which is, that their first language is French, got elementary education from a French-language school in Canada, or, they are a parent/guardian of a child who attends or attended a French-language elementary or secondary school in Canada.
French-language schools also open their doors to people who do not speak English or French. There are various programs set in place to help such newcomers on their French learning journey and be successful in the process.
3. FSL (French as a second language) programs:
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FSL programs are very accessible and are available for all students in English-language systems, and even students with special needs.
In Ontario, there are 3 FSL programs:
French is the subject that students get to learn. During the elementary stage, students must acquire a minimum of 600 hours of French instruction, till the end of Grade 8.
During the secondary stage, which is academic, applied and open courses are available for Grades 9 and 10. Grades 11 and 12 consists of open courses and university preparation.
Within Extended French, again, students learn French as a subject. They take at least one other subject where French is the language of instruction. In the elementary stage, 25% of instruction given is in French.
This program requires students to take an accumulation of seven credits in French. Out of seven, four are for FSL language courses. Three go towards subjects in which French is the language of instruction.
Students learn French as a subject in this program as well. Two or more other subjects where French is the language of instruction are part of the program. Compared to Extended French, at the elementary level in Immersion, at least 50% of all instruction is in French.
Here students accumulate 10 credits in French. Four are for AFL language courses. Six are for the remaining subjects in which French is the language of instruction.
4. Benefits of French in Ontario:
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You must be thinking what are the advantages of learning French in Ontario, well many! You have to, first of all, understand that the official languages of Canada are French and English, and that gives you quite the edge if you know both.
A competitive edge in the job market is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to advantages. It will further boost your confidence as a learner and give you a new perspective in regards to Canada and diversity. Additionally, your cognitive development will evolve, along with problem solving and creative thinking skills, to name a few.
About the author
Rohan Khanna is a writer/content creator, who also happens to be a Potterhead. He has a penchant for art, history, and culture and is also a part time artist. Figuring out life one step at a time, he manages to adhere to health and fitness, while going through the trials and tribulations.