The regular French immersion program is a second language program in which French is the language of instruction. Children naturally learn the language, since all their school subjects are taught in French. The subject materials are similar to the English-language program. Moreover, the Ministry of Education established French immersion programs corresponding to the English language programs. By the 2nd or 3rd year, the English Language Arts course is given at the rate of one hour per day. The program can be followed up to grade 12. Students who receive their high school diploma through an immersion program get a bilingual mention.
Who can register?
Schools offering regular French immersion programs offer children, whose mother tongue is not French, the opportunity to learn French while following the same curriculum as all other students in Saskatchewan. The aim is to provide youth with the opportunity to become functionally bilingual, to be able to work in both official languages and acknowledge the value of other cultures.
Generally, immersion programs offer an entirely French education from kindergarten to third grade. The English as a subject is taught from the fourth year. This is much more French than what is taught in core French programs where, from the fourth year, students are taught the basics of the French language daily during French classes.
The success of immersion programs is based on the fact that children are immersed in a totally French environment at a very young age. In addition, they are learning French and use it in learning other subjects, improving their understanding of the language and their ability to use it. In fact, Saskatchewan programs are so successful that they serve as models worldwide!
Help your children learn even if you do not speak French
If, as a parent, you do not speak French, you may be wondering how you can help your children in their work. You are not alone. The Ministry of Education of Saskatchewan and Canadian Parents for French can give you advice on how to overcome the language barrier so that you can actually track your children`s education and actively take part. In addition, you will receive the full support of your children's teachers, because it is also their desire that your children succeed!
If you wish to know more resources available in Saskatchewan, Visit the section of the public school board manual in Saskatoon (see here).