Free French classes po­lish skills

Eve­ryone wel­come

L'Etoile - - IN OTHER WORDS -

But a re­gio­nal pro­gram run­ning through the French school board for the past two years is see­king to ba­lance the scales for anyone who can­not com­mu­ni­cate free­ly in French in the re­gion.

The ne­west se­ries of classes that are of­fe­red free of charge will get un­der­way the week of Ja­nua­ry 18.

The French Se­cond Lan­guage courses are being of­fe­red by the Com­mis­sion sco­laire des Trois-Lacs through their adult edu­ca­tion wing at the Centre Île-Per­rot.

Ac­cor­ding to Louise Nor­man­deau, who over­sees the pro­gram, “Eve­ry­bo­dy wants to be able to com­mu­ni­cate free­ly.”

She adds that the classes are gea­red to­ward “any in­di­vi­dual from a dif­ferent coun­try or pro­vince should at­tend to help get ac­cli­ma­ti­zed to Que­bec.”

Dai­ly ins­truc­tion

Un­like classes that meet once or twice a week for a few hours, par­ti­ci­pants in the 10-week pro­gram will at­tend classes four days a week, Mon­day through Thurs­day, du­ring morning or af­ter­noon ses­sions.

Morning classes will take place from

It can be a vi­cious cycle. Uni­lin­gual An­glo­phones or those who can not com­mu­ni­cate in French of­ten find them­selves with li­mi­ted so­cial or em­ploy­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties and thus not en­ough mo­ney to pay high fees for French courses.

8:45 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., while af­ter­noon course will run from 12:45 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.

Nor­man­deau says that to her know­ledge this is the on­ly or­ga­ni­za­tion of­fe­ring such a flexible sche­dule.

Who can at­tend

The free classes are open to adult stu­dents. Most who’ve at­ten­ded in the past have ran­ged in age from 20 to 50 years old.

Par­ti­ci­pants can re­gis­ter with an ori­gi­nal Ca­na­dian birth cer­ti­fi­cate, or for those from other coun­tries, a per­ma­nent re­sident card or ci­ti­zens’ card. All par­ti­ci­pants must al­so pro­vide proof that they live in the re­gion.

Nor­man­deau notes that the pro­gram was born of need. The Com­mis­sion sco­laire des Trois-Lacs star­ted pro­vi­ding the courses in Fe­brua­ry 2007, when po­ten­tial stu­dents came cal­ling.

“People would knock on the door and ask “Cours fran­çais?” and that was all they knew how to say (in French),” Nor­man­deau said.

A side be­ne­fit is that stu­dents of­ten bond qui­ck­ly.

“It’s be­come a mee­ting place,” Nor­man­deau no­ted. “People meet people fromthe same coun­try or from so­mew­here (with) their same lan­guage and it helps out. It’s ea­sier when you have so­meone to com­mu­ni­cate with in the class.”

Th­ree classes with bet­ween 15 and 20 stu­dents will get un­der­way Ja­nua­ry 18 at the Centre Île-Per­rot, lo­ca­ted at 333 boul. Per­rot in L’Île-Per­rot.

All par­ti­ci­pants are eli­gible ac­cor­ding to the centre, whe­ther they have just mo­ved to Que­bec or have li­ved here their en­tire life. For in­for­ma­tion or to re­gis­ter, call 514 477-7000, ext. 5620, or log on­to www.cs­trois-lacs.qc.ca.

PHOTOTHÈQUE

Free French courses will get un­der­way in L’Île-Per­rot on Ja­nua­ry 18.

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