Friday, April 04, 2008

NB faces probe over Immersion debacle

Furthur update from this and this post

The Globe and Mail reports that New Brunswick ombudsman will take a look at the decision the NB government made to axe the early immersion program in Canada's only bilingual province.

Warning that a generation of would-be bilingual students could be lost, New Brunswick's ombudsman announced yesterday that he will investigate the provincial government's decision to scrap its early French immersion program.

Ombudsman Bernard Richard called on the government to postpone for a year its scheduled cancellation of the early immersion program, saying his office received an unprecedented 250 complaints.
Findings from the ombudsman aren't binding and Education Minister Kelly Lamrock said he will go ahead with his plan. Nevertheless, parents who support early immersion are convinced that the ombudsman's probe will buttress their claims that the government made its controversial decision with little consultation and using faulty research.
The ombudsman is expected to complete his probe in June.

While he said he would look with "greatest care" at the conclusions of Mr. Richard's investigation, Mr. Lamrock said the Liberal government of Premier Shawn Graham was elected with a mandate to improve the province's poor education record.

"Certainly there's not going to be a postponement," the minister said in a telephone interview.

"Waiting a year for an unelected office to give us advice would be a waste of a year of a mandate. . . . The decision is not going to change."

Governments and its representatives are elected to represent us not rule us. This was a very abrupt decision made too quickly IMO. It appears to me that the government was just waiting for this report so that it could back up its already made up mind to scrap early French Immersion. While the Minister is adament that it will not reverse its decision, I am hopeful that enough attention to this issue will force the NB government and education minister to consider another option, instead of getting rid of the only program that is actually working in that province.


Blogger HammertimeGP said...

Sat Apr 05, 06:39:00 PM EDT  

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