There has been no discussion on who is to blame for this situation. The half empty school problem of the English School Board (ESB) started with Bill 101, written in 1977 by an Anglophobic PQ minister to protect and promote the French language in Quebec. One racist law, to remove and make English invisible on all signs was successfully fought. Another racist law forced all children of immigrants to the French School Board (FSB), forbidding the ESB access to attract English speaking immigrants to their schools. This was reasonable since the ESB did not have French immersion schools at that time. Once they did, the ESB erred in not fighting and demanding access to the English immigrants children.

All laws can be changed. Bill 101 is not immutable. It was the FSB who is the major party responsible for this fiasco. How could the FSB not comprehend and anticipate the compounding pressure on them to accommodate more and more children to their schools every year? It’s been 42 years since Bill 101. Why did they not demand past Governments during this time to build more schools for them, as well enlarging existing schools? Premier Legault’s forcible removal of schools from the ESB is an attack on minority rights. Section 23 of the Canadian charter of Rights and Freedoms, which under the Charter that guarantees the English-speaking community the right to control and manage its educational institutions and is not subject to the notwithstanding clause. He cannot override Section 23 rights with the notwithstanding clause. It’s time for the Anglophone community to fight back, go to the courts, to the Canadian Supreme Court, and if necessary to the U.N., to retain the legal rights for our ESBs, for them to have access to English speaking immigrants and to regain and make viable our ESB. It’ time for the CAQ to stop their Anglophobic, multi-cultural racism.

Jack Hoffman

Cote St-Luc

(1) comment

Sandra B

Great letter! Thank you for writing it.

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