Share of students in French schools rises in Quebec over last two decades: watchdog – Montreal Wa Jobz



The number of Quebec children attending school in French continues to grow as the number of students eligible for education in English decreases, new data from the province’s language watchdog show.

The agency — Office québécois de la langue française, commonly known by its abbreviation OQLF _ published its latest study on education language on Tuesday, showing that the proportion of anglophone students attending French schools shot up in Quebec over the last two decades, going from 18.4 per cent in 2000 to 31.9 per cent in 2021.

The proportion of allophone students — those whose first language is neither English nor French — in French schools also increased in the same time period, from about 78.8 per cent to 92.3 per cent.

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Provincewide, the share of students in French school systems increased by less than two percentage points, to 91.2 per cent, but on the Island of Montreal that figure jumped about eight percentage points, to 81.8 per cent.

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Overall, Quebec’s French schools saw a net gain of 14,500 students between 2000 and 2021, according to the OQLF. Enrolment at English schools, meanwhile, dropped by 19,200 students.

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With some exceptions, Quebec’s language law limits attendance at publicly funded English schools to children whose parents or siblings were educated in English in Canada, or who have already received most of their education in English in Canada.

The new study points to what it calls a notable drop in the proportion of anglophone and allophone students eligible for English-language education in the province over the last 20 years.

About 72 per cent of anglophone students were eligible to attend English school in 2021, down 13 percentage points from 2000, and just 7.5 per cent of allophone students were eligible for education in English, down from 20.6 per cent in 2000.

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A total of 105,100 Quebec students were eligible for English education in 2021, a decrease of 19,500 compared to 2000.

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The OQLF attributes increases in the shares of anglophone and allophone students in French schools primarily to an influx of immigrants.

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