Immersion in the second generation, a fascinating report from Canada
Born in the heart of English-speaking Winnipeg in 1971, she was just 10 years old when she rode two buses 30 minutes across town every day to attend the city’s first immersion school. She went on to a French-language college and eventually a career as a French teacher.
Bilingualism transformed her life. It opened the door to opportunities that would have otherwise passed her by. Now she wants to pass on those same opportunities to her three children, all of whom attend the local French immersion school. They represent a little-studied but growing segment of Canada: French immersion’s second generation.
Over the last five years enrolment in French immersion has skyrocketed across the country. It’s up 12 per cent since 2006, according to new figures from Statistics Canada. And the timing of this jump coincides with the period in which the children of the first cohort to attend French immersion started to arrive at elementary schools.
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