Construction of two new French-language elementary schools in the GTA

I was delighted to be invited yesterday by the Conseil scolaire de district catholique Centre-Sud (CSDCCS) to attend ceremonies marking the construction of two new French-language schools. The first one is Saint-Noël-Chabanel Elementary located in North York. This will be a new site for an already existing school. The second one, located in Scarborough, is an entirely new elementary school and will serve Francophones leaving in Toronto’s east end.

As you may already know, I have taken a keen interest in the situation of French-language schools in the GTA. Indeed, last year, I published a formal investigation report on the matter, followed by a news release a few weeks ago.

But there is one thing I would like to emphasize. The construction of a new French-language school is not only a sign of respect for the Francophone community — a community that has a 400 year history in Ontario —, it also sends a clear signal that this community has a promising future. It sends a strong message, for all and one to hear, that Francophones are here to stay, that they are thriving in the GTA and that they are making significant contributions to the whole of Ontarian society today and for years to come.

I also want to point out how amazed I was to witness the rich diversity found within the Franco-Ontarian population. This was readily apparent to me yesterday upon seeing the many beautiful faces of the school children who attended both events.

Finally, I urge you to read the news release issued by the CSDCCS regarding these two new French-language schools. I also invite you to visit Radio-Canada’s website, where you will find a photo slide show of one of these events.

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