5 problems and solutions about EFI

Problem: EFI classes don’t have special education kids or kids with behavioral problems. This creates an unfair advantage to EFI kids who don’t have to deal with unruly classes.

Lamrock’s solution will reduce the number of special children from 4.3 to 3.4 per class. His idea is that dilution is the solution to pollution. This still won’t actually do anything to help the special education kids. Nor will it change the problems associated with Ritalin.

Solution: Address problems with integration. Instead of having special classes for special students, parents have sued school districts because they were unable to accept that their precious little snowflakes were “different”. This caused them to be put into regular classrooms where they no longer have an opportunity to receive an education that’s tailored to them. Instead of treating the special education students as pollution, put the proper resources in place to ensure they have the proper support. There’s no reason they can’t go into EFI as well as long as they have the proper support.

Problem: EFI causes “streaming”

Solution: So do a lot of other things, but they aren’t cancelling those. They still offer level 1 classes in high school, and even LFI “segregates” students. If streaming was so bad they’d get rid of it everywhere.

Problem: Not every student continues on with EFI if they are having problems. They transfer into the English program with the “dumb” students.

Solution: Now that students can’t fail, ensure they get the same resources in EFI as in the English program. When I went through EFI in the 1980s, some kids repeated the year, yet stayed in EFI. They just need to ensure that newer methods for dealing with slower students get adapted universally.

Problem: EFI isn’t universally available in all schools, it isn’t available in poor, rural areas.

This isn’t caused by EFI, it is caused by education levels of the parents. Poorer people typically tend to not value education as highly as more wealthy people. People in rural areas also tend to have more labour intensive jobs where having an education isn’t as important. This causes EFI to only be available in urban and suburban areas.

Solution: This is a tough one that may not ever get solved. It doesn’t just impact EFI, it affects the entire education system. It is also a major cause of the rural/urban divide. Bussing students to a different school will help, but it isn’t alwys ideal, especially if the next nearest school is many kms away.

Problem: EFI isn’t always followed through at the high school level.

Solution: It all depends on your definition of EFI. In High school, all you get is 1 course / semester that’s available in French. The problem is that students need to be prepared for post secondary school. Universities require certain grade 11 and 12 courses to be passed before you can enroll. If you stop EFI at grade 10, then test at the end of grade 10, you’ll have a higher success rate. Keep the same courses open in grades 11 and 12 for refresher courses for students who don’t need the history classes for University.

All facts and figures came from articles linked to the Save Early French Immersion in Canada’s “Bilingual” Province Facebook Group