Graham Hughes The Canadian Press Education Minister Bernard Drainville made the announcement Tuesday morning in the House de commerce du Montréal métropolitain (CCMM), stating that this sum “was provided for in the last budget, in the spring”.
The Government of Quebec will invest $81.3 million by 2027 in vocational training to fight against school dropouts, particularly in the regions.
This was announced by the Minister of l'Éducation Bernard Drainville Tuesday morning before the Chamber of Commerce of Metropolitan Montreal (CCMM), stating that this amount “was provided for in the last budget, in the spring”.
“I want our young people to continue their studies and evolve in the fields they love and which are essential to the Quebec economy. We are therefore taking concrete steps to modernize vocational training and make it even more attractive,” said the Minister.
Approximately 200 small cohorts will be offered annually thanks to this amount and all regions of Quebec will be able to benefit from it according to the government.
The funding will be used in particular to update certain programs.
Bernard Drainville gave the example of service training at the clientele “that dates back 20 years”, then “some courses need to be modernized”.
The Minister stressed the importance of valuing vocational training and part of the $81.3 million will be used to promote enrollment in programs to train “plumbers, electricians, secretaries, nursing assistants” and other professions, mentioned the Minister.
During his speech, Mr. Drainville stressed that professional fields of study deserve more valuation in society.
“We have to change that, a diploma is a diploma, indicated the minister. If the child wants to go to technical training because that's what will make [him] happy [x], let's support [him].
This investment is part of in the government's desire to graduate 30,000 additional students in vocational training.
Welcomed by demonstrators
Before giving a speech to the CCMM, Bernard Drainville had been welcomed by several union groups.
On this Valentine's Day, demonstrators told the Minister of Education “that the school networks and college need love.”
Several union members chanted slogans and held up heart-shaped signs in front of the Sheraton Center in Montreal.
They ask the Minister to improve the working conditions of the staff of educational establishments in order to improve the learning conditions of pupils and students
According to Mélanie Hubert, president of the Autonomous Federation (FAE), Minister Drainville will have to improve conditions in the vocational training (FP) sector if he wishes to attract new teachers to graduate 30,000 students over the next four years.
“In particular, we will have to convince tradespeople in shortage trades to come and teach. And for that, it's going to take working conditions, salary conditions, but also giving them a bit of evening, weekend air, to convince them to come and work in teaching. Then we also have to think about qualifying these people,” she argued.
The FAE believes that due to “current working conditions and the shortage of teaching staff, future teachers, but also the workers of the various sectors concerned, do not respond to Mr. Drainville's call”.
In a scrum after his speech, Minister Drainville indicated that he was listening to the demands of the unions:
“I have met with all the unions since I became minister, I met the FAE in Laval, not even three weeks ago, so I think I am very very very attentive and I am very aware of their demands.
The Minister of Education also spoke with Michel Leblanc, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal.
He took the opportunity to reiterate his list of seven priorities, presented a few weeks ago, to improve the school.
Apart from upgrading vocational training, the Minister of Education wants to add a second adult to the classroom, that is, daycare educators, in order to to assist teachers, who must manage classes with more and more students with special needs
He also wants to shorten teacher training in order to make up for the shortage of manpower.
The Minister also wants each school to be able to offer at least one specific project and that all students can be registered for a project.
Bernard Drainville wants to continue the renovation and construction of schools, since many of them are dilapidated.
Child in, he wants, like his colleague Christian Dubé, to obtain better access to network data.