Government of Canada

Government of Canada

May 24, 2006 10:03 ET

Governments of Canada and New Brunswick Support French-Language Education and Second-Language Instruction

FREDERICTON, NEW BRUNSWICK--(CCNMatthews - May 24, 2006) - The governments of Canada and New Brunswick today announced the signing of three bilateral agreements to support French-language education and second-language instruction.

As work began to expand the Centre communautaire Sainte-Anne, Minister of International Cooperation and Minister for La Francophonie and Official Languages Josee Verner and New Brunswick Premier and Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs Bernard Lord made the announcement.

These agreements provide for federal financial support of more than $97 million. This amount will be added to the more than $513 million in provincial investment already allocated for French first-language education and official second-language instruction as part of New Brunswick's plan for quality education.

"My government is attaching great importance to the success of young people and others who are members of New Brunswick's Acadian and Francophone communities," said Minister Verner. "The ongoing cooperation between the governments of Canada and New Brunswick is proof of our commitment to fostering the development of these communities and promoting linguistic duality."

"New Brunswick, Canada's only officially bilingual province, has always been a pioneer in the promotion of linguistic duality," said Premier Lord. "We are a microcosm of the Canadian ideal. The official-language cooperation agreements that New Brunswick is signing with the Government of Canada are essential in attaining our objectives and for the future of a bilingual New Brunswick."

Under the multi-year Canada-New Brunswick Agreement on Education - 2005-2006 to 2008-2009 - the Government of Canada will add $86 million to the amount of $495 million already allocated by the Government of New Brunswick to support French-language education and instruction in French as a second language.

Funds allocated under the agreement will help to support the Government of New Brunswick's action plan. The plan aims to improve access to quality French first-language education and French second-language instruction at the elementary, high school, college, and university level. It also aims to encourage students' success throughout their academic career; and to provide support to teaching staff.

In accordance with the Agreement on the Expansion Projects of the Sainte-Anne (Fredericton) and Samuel-de-Champlain (Saint John) School and Community Centres, the Government of Canada is contributing $10 million for the two centres' community components. The Government of New Brunswick is investing $17 million for the centres' school components for 2005-2006 to 2007-2008.

A complementary agreement was also signed by the governments of Canada and New Brunswick to support four projects carried out in 2005-2006 that meet various needs related to education in French as a first language at all levels. The Government of Canada is contributing $1 million to the Government of New Brunswick to help implement these projects. The Government of New Brunswick has already allocated another million dollars to this agreement in 2005-2006.

For more information on intergovernmental cooperation in minority-language education and second-language instruction, please visit the Department of Canadian Heritage website at www.canadianheritage.gc.ca

(This release is available on the Internet at www.canadianheritage.gc.ca under Media Room.)

Contact Information

  • Office of the Minister of International Cooperation and
    Minister for La Francophonie and Official Languages
    Clement Belanger, Chief Communications Advisor
    819 997-6919
    or
    Government of New Brunswick
    Gisele Regimbal
    Communications, Intergovernmental Affairs
    506 444-4594
    or
    Canadian Heritage
    Donald Boulanger
    A/Chief, Media Relations
    819 997-9314