March 22, 2016
The Quebec government has proposed legislation in the form of Bill 86 that would substantially change the way that public education at the primary and secondary schools is governed. Many of the provisions of this bill target changes that will give a much larger voice to both parents and professional educators in the decision-making processes affecting how schools are administered.
Townshippers' Association fully supports the position that parents, education professionals and community members need to have a greater, not lesser, voice in the governance of schools and the services they provide to both students and the community. This bill provides a welcome opportunity to closely examine the importance of these governance structures at the board level, and to look at how to improve decision-making processes at the school level that will enhance the education of English-speaking minority youth, especially in regard to curriculum, pedagogy and student success. Article 72, sections 207.1 and 209.1, would appear to define the mission and mandate needed to carry out this requirement and in many ways would appear to be a solid foundation for constructive change. However, we respectfully request that, before this government moves forward with its reform, it carefully examines the following three concerns in the context of the impact on a minority rural population already struggling with poverty, underemployment and outward migration.