Education Minister Rob Fleming. (Hansard TV)

Education minister off to Europe to recruit French teachers

France, Netherlands, Belgium stops to sign exchange agreements

Education Minister Rob Fleming is leading a recruiting trip to Europe next week to deal with a shortage of French teachers in B.C. schools.

The province is spending $40,000 to send a group including Fleming and deputy minister Scott MacDonald on a trip to France, Belgium and the Netherlands April 3-6. Vancouver School Board superintendent Suzanne Hoffman and B.C. Teachers’ Federation president Glen Hansman are also going, with their organizations paying their expenses, the ministry said in a statement.

Fleming intends to sign government-to-government agreements in France and Belgium to promote teacher and student exchanges.

High demand for French immersion has contributed to a shortage of French teachers across Canada, said Glyn Lewis, B.C. executive director of Canadian Parents for French.

There are currently more than 53,000 students enrolled in French immersion in B.C., about 10 per cent of the student population. The programs have a 96 per cent graduation rate, ministry statistics show.

B.C. schools have been on a recruiting drive for teachers in general, to hire 3,500 additional teachers to meet the terms of a 2017 Supreme Court of Canada ruling on class size formulas.

Earlier this year, Fleming announced funding for an additional 100 teacher training spaces for the highest-demand fields, including special education, math, physics and French.

Just Posted

‘Summer from hell’: vandals rob community garden following devastating wildfire season

The community rallied to keep the Health Minds Community Garden open in Fort St. James

College of New Caledonia offers new automotive glass technician program

The program is offered mainly online, allowing more students to take part from across the north

Decision on Burns Lake’s workforce camp “pending very soon”: Coastal GasLink

Meetings to discuss new camp location postponed due to wildfire situation

B.C. parents leery of HPV cervical cancer vaccine

Provincial registration uptake among lowest in Canada

Municipal spending outpaces population growth 4-fold in B.C.: report

Canadian Federation of Independent Business has released its annual operational spending report

Conservation officer frees B.C. deer from flotation gear mishap

BC Conservation Officer Service is reminding residents to keep backyards clear of entanglements

Czarnik nets 3 as Flames dump Canucks 5-2

Calgary picks up exhibition win over Vancouver

Ottawa to name new ambassador for women, peace and security, Freeland says

Chrystia Freeland also confirmed Canada would spend about $25 million to fund number of initiatives

‘A little bright spot:’ Ottawa residents rescue dog trapped beneath rubble

Freelance journalist says rescue of a dog trapped under rubble was happy ending amid chaos in Ottawa

B.C. deaf community wants different sign languages on federal accessibility act

Advocates also want Indigenous Sign Language to be recognized on the Indigenous Language Act

VIDEO: B.C.-born firefighter remembered by MP in emotional speech

Family asks first responders to look after one another in wake of suicide, growing concerns of PTSD

Airline has ‘close call’ with drone while en route to B.C. airport

Jazz Aviation reported the drone sighting near Vancouver to the RCMP and Transport Canada

Tragic accident claims life of B.C. toddler

Fundraising effort has been created to help mom and family

B.C. nanny charged with sex abuse of 3 children

Saanich Police seek potential victims of Johnathon Lee Robichaud from Central Saanich

Most Read