OTTAWA – Today the federal government revealed Investing in Our Future 2018-23 Action Plan for Official Languages. Canadian Parents for French is ecstatic with the investment of $499 million ($2.7 billion over 5 years) into Canada’s Official Languages, the largest investment in official languages in our country’s history. During the launch, the government representative expressed an openness to collaborate with organizations to focus these funds according to identified specific needs.
During the reveal of the Action Plan, Prime Minister Trudeau stated “this is great news, not only for minority language communities but for all of Canada.” And the Action Plan highlights the Governments support for Official Languages in Canada. Minister of Canadian Heritage, Mélanie Joly highlighted that “we all have responsibilities that both of our linguistic communities remain vibrant.”
The Action Plan includes an objective to increase the bilingualism rate of the Canadian population to 20% (from the existing 17.9%) by 2036. The investments focus on three principal areas – strengthening communities, improving access to services, and promoting a bilingual Canada. The increase of core funding for organizations will assist Canadian Parents for French in moving forward with our mandate of furthering bilingualism by creating and promoting opportunities for youth to learn and use French.
The Plan states an investment of $31.29 million in recruiting and retaining teachers for French immersion and French as a second language, equal to the amount being invested for teachers in minority schools.
CPF National Executive Director, Nicole Thibault stated “we have been waiting for an Action Plan like this, the federal government listened to FSL community stakeholders and the support for student incentives to pursue postsecondary education in French, cultural projects and the creation of community spaces are important ways to lay the groundwork to further and normalize official language bilingualism in Canada.”
Canadian Parents for French is the national network of volunteers which values French as an integral part of Canada and which furthers bilingualism by creating and promoting French-second-language learning opportunities for young Canadians.