Quebec's tutoring program set to launch, but English-speaking groups fear being left out
MONTREAL -- The Quebec government is one step closer to implementing its tutoring program to help students struggling this year – but some worry English students may get left behind.
Education Minister Jean-Francois Roberge unveiled his plan to recruit tutors Wednesday morning, releasing a video on Twitter.
Roberge calls on student and substitute teachers, as well as retired educators, to apply to be part of the government’s new tutoring program.
It’s welcome news for teachers, parents and opposition parties who say they’ve been waiting for this plan for months.
“We’ve known for at least six months now that we need a tutoring program,” said Liberal education critic Marwah Rizqy.
The pandemic has left many students struggling – an estimated 30 to 40 per cent will have failing grades on their next report card.
“We’re concerned about student motivation and we're concerned about dropout rates,” said Kathy Korakakis of the English Parents’ Committee Association.
But there are unanswered questions, not only about when, but about how the program will work.
Some wonder if anglophone students will have the same access to services as their francophone peers.
“If you go on the website, everything is in French,” said Riqzy.
The government’s website said prospective tutors should have a good command of oral and written French, but no other languages are mentioned.
The government has partnered with Alloprof to provide the tutoring programs.
Its website is presently entirely in French, with the exception of one section featuring English as a subject.
“I would just like to remind the minister that anglophone students and children are worth just as much as francophone students,” said Korakakis.
When asked to specify which services would be available to anglophone students, a spokesperson for the education ministry said services are available in both languages, but did not elaborate.
Roberge said the program will be available in the coming weeks.
- With files form CTV News Montreal's Amanda Kline