QCGN President Eva Ludvig and Townshippers’ Association President Don Warholtz lay out a detailed case arguing for full reversal of the Quebec government’s targeted tuition hikes. It is vital, the two community leaders underscore, to bear in mind that “students from other provinces who study here return to their home provinces as ambassadors of Quebec, who sing the praises of their experiences in this part of our country, broadening our understanding of each other as Canadians, just as do students who study elsewhere and return to Quebec.”
Eric Girard, the Quebec finance minister also responsible for relations with English-speaking Quebecers, suggested last week he is monitoring reaction to the government’s controversial decision to double tuition for university students from the rest of Canada – but he provided no details. The Quebec Community Groups Network (QCGN), the English-speaking community, and, indeed, a multitude of other concerned parties remain “eager to hear the results” of any intervention he may have made or may be considering on this exceptionally high-priority subject, says Sylvia Martin-Laforge, the QCGN’s director-general.
Quebec’s three English-language universities continue to scramble to deal with the expected impact on registration and financing provoked by the Coalition Avenir Québec (CAQ) government’s abrupt doubling of tuition fees for out-of-province and international students, to take effect in less than a year for fresh arrivals. The Quebec Community Groups Network (QCGN) has called on Eric Girard, himself a McGill University graduate, “to tell us what he intends to do on behalf of the community of Quebecers for which he has ministerial responsibility.”
While Coalition Avenir Québec (CAQ) language-policy measures “in general, including the hurtful Bill 96, may be aimed at the Montreal region, they also bring collateral damage to the nearly 250,000 English-speaking Quebecers who live outside the metropolis,” states QCGN director general Sylvia Martin-Laforge.
“It’s worrying to implement a policy like that without consultation,” says QCGN Director General Sylvia Martin-Laforge about the Quebec government’s tuition hike for out-of-province students looking to study at English universities.
Quebec’s English-speaking community leaders are calling for the provincial Education Ministry to allow all those who are eligible for English eligibility certificates to be able to obtain one. Currently, students are only eligible to apply for the certificate before completing their secondary studies. “Why would you want to disadvantage any Quebecer?” asks QCGN Director General Sylvia Martin-Laforge. “You want your population, francophone or anglophone, to have all the essential conditions to succeed.”
The latest Quebec government measure to protect French is an “assault on English universities – effectively doubling regular tuition for students from outside Quebec who want to study at McGill, Concordia, or Bishop’s,” says QCGN Director General Sylvia Martin-Laforge in a statement. The QCGN is calling on Eric Girard, minister responsible for relations with English-speaking Quebecers, to explain what he intends to do on behalf of the community he represents.
By doubling the tuition cost for out-of-province students, the Coalition Avenir Québec government has demonstrated its belief that “the most effective way to support French is to curtail English and English-language institutions to the greatest extent possible,” says QCGN Director General Sylvia Martin-Laforge in a statement.
The Quebec Community Groups Network is alarmed that a recent move by the government of Premier François Legault to hike tuition fees for out-of-province students will spur young English-speaking Quebecers to leave the province. And it will stop talented young people in other provinces and beyond from coming here.
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