French immersion student numbers up across B.C.

French is the new black as school comes back into session for students across the Island and B.C.

French is the new black as school comes back into session for students across the Island and B.C.

According to a recent study by Canadian Parents for French, B.C. and Yukon division, French immersion enrolment in B.C.’s public education system has reached a record 15th year of consecutive growth.

Figures indicate that this year 47,857 students – or 8.5 per cent of the student population in B.C.  – are now registered in the program. There are also more than 187,000 students learning French through basic core French.

Of the 7,894 students registered in kindergarten to Grade 5 in the Greater Victoria School District (SD61), 23.4 per cent are enrolled in French immersion. A further 25.3 per cent of Grade 6 to 8 students are registered in the program at the middle school level. High school registration numbers for the district are not yet available.

“Yes, French immersion is on the rise in our area, especially for our kindergarten levels,” said Simon Burgers, modern language coordinator for SD61. “French immersion in Victoria has grown on an annual basis and Victoria has seen an increase in kindergarten registrations in French immersion.”

Burgers says Victoria lays claim to the largest French immersion program per total student enrolment in the province.

“The Greater Victoria School District continues to lead the way in offering our families many educational program options,” said Wendy Holob, principal of École Willows Elementary. “We offer sport academies, schools of choice, and French immersion programs as opportunities to meet individual student’s interests and strengths. French immersion is one of these exciting programs available to our families. In their own ways, each of these programs adds to our vibrant school environments.”

According to Statistics Canada, regardless of mother tongue, those with immersion skills have an employment rate higher than the national average, and an unemployment rate of four per cent (under the national average of 7.7 per cent.)

“We believe French programs are popular because they are widely recognized by parents as providing young students with the tools and experiences that will enrich their lives and help them prepare for the future,” said Debra Pool, president of Canadian Parents for French B.C. and Yukon, an organization dedicated to promoting second language opportunities for all young students.

To learn more about the French immersion program, go to sd61.bc.ca.

news@mondaymag.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Demonstrators at the legislature on April 14 called on the province to decriminalize drug possession and provide widespread access to regulated safe supply across B.C. (Jake Romphf/News Staff)
Rally calls for decriminalization, safe supply as overdose emergency turns 5

From 2016 to the end of February, 7,072 British Columbians died due to overdose

The Latoria South section of the Royal Bay development in Colwood could include a new long-term care facility. (Black Press Media file photo)
Colwood’s Royal Bay could be home to new long-term care facilities

Capital Regional Hospital District board approves $8M land purchase for purpose

(Black Press Media file photo)
Youth gets combative with police at Victoria hospital

VicPD officer injured, youth kept in care under Mental Health Act

A man with a history of sexual offences was arrested after he followed and aggressively tried to talk to two young woman on the weekend. Black Press File Photo
Man convicted of sexual offences arrested after teens followed in Victoria

Women hid in a Quadra Village convenience store as man aggressively tried to get in

A few dozen students and parents gathered outside Lansdowne Middle School April 14 to protest proposed budget cuts to SD61 music programs. From left to right: Lyra Gaudin, Cleo Bateman, Abby Farish, Brigitte Peters, Enid Gaudin, Des Farish. (Jane Skrypnek/News Staff)
SD61’s proposed $7 million cuts threaten equity and inclusion, say parents, teachers

Music classes, inclusion services, reading programs on the line

(Black Press Media file photo)
POLL: Do you have a plan in place in the event of a tsunami?

Tsunamis have claimed the lives of more than 250,000 people between 1998… Continue reading

Anyone with information on any of these individuals is asked to call 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or visit the website victoriacrimestoppers.ca for more information.
Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of April 13

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

(Government of Canada)
Liberal MP caught stark naked during House of Commons video conference

William Amos, in Quebec, appeared on the screens of his fellow members of Parliament completely naked

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C.’s COVID-19 situation at the B.C. legislature, Feb. 1, 2020. (B.C. government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 case count jumps to 1,168 Wednesday, nearly 400 in hospital

Now 120 coronavirus patients in intensive care, six more deaths

Moss covered branches are seen in the Avatar Old Growth Forest near Port Renfrew on Vancouver Island, B.C. Thursday, Sept. 29, 2011. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C. blockades aimed at protecting old-growth forests reveal First Nation split

Two Pacheedaht chiefs say they’re ‘concerned about the increasing polarization over forestry activities’ in the territory

One of the grand prizes for this year's Hometown Heroes Lottery includes a seaside home at SookePoint, $1.5 million, and an Audi Quattro. (Photo courtesy of Hometown Heroes)
Hometown Heroes Lottery features seaside home in Sooke

A stunning seaside home in Sooke could be yours for the price… Continue reading

City workers from Duncan were busy recently putting up street signs in both Hul’q’umi’num’ and English. (Submitted photo)
Hul’q’umi’num street signs installed in downtown Duncan

Partnership with Cowichan Tribes sees English street names twinned with Indigenous language

A still from the video taken of a violent arrest on May 30, 2020 in downtown Kelowna. (File)
Kelowna Mountie charged with assault for caught-on-camera violent arrest

Const. Siggy Pietrzak was filmed punching a suspected impaired driver at least 10 times during an arrest

Most Read