Standing Committee on Official Languages (LANG)

This week, the committee continued its Evaluation of the Roadmap: Improving Programs and Service Distribution. During the first meeting of the week, committee members heard testimonies from two government agencies, the Ministry of Public Works and Government Services and the Federal Agency for the Economic Development of Southern Ontario, and two non-government agencies: Canadian Parents for French and Canadian Youth for French. The founder and Director of Canadian Youth for French, Justin Morrow, made a particularly touching presentation, as he explained to the committee his personal motivations for creating the organization. All the testimonies were interesting and informative. The Ministry of Public works reported that Canada’s federal government has the second largest translation bureau in the world and showed the committee a website they created to assist teachers and students, called the Language Portal of Canada.

Thursday the committee members again heard testimonies from four organizations, divided into two groups. For the first hour, committee members listened to representatives from the Association Canadienne d’Éducation du Langue Française and the Canadian Teachers’ Federation. These groups provide pedagogic material for teachers. ACÉLF also organises exchanges for FLS students to go live in francophone communities and practice their French. In the second half of the meeting, the Canadian Association of Immersion Teachers (website in French only) and the Canadian Association of Second Language Teachers made their testimonies. These organisations work to promote bilingualism and provide resources for teachers and students. As with previous groups, these two organisations are working to promote the use of French outside of the classroom.