Archived Letter – 797

Re: French fiasco?

Contrary to what you may believe, no one is spending millions of dollars to “create a French society here in Ontario.” The “French society” has existed in Ontario since 1615 when Samuel de Champlain travelled here. Ontario houses the largest Francophone community outside Quebec.

I’m curious to know how many additional funds would appear if French education was abolished. The student population would be unchanged. Are these untold millions coming from administrative costs? If yes, please contact the Green Party of Ontario. They wish to cut costs by consolidating the Catholic and Public English and French boards. Abolishing French education would likely have little impact since the same things are taught in both systems.

As for colourful highway signs, I suspect you mean the new electronic coloured signs being installed. As they are designed to display road safety, traffic information and pretty much anything else as required, French is not the primary concern and adds not a penny to the cost.

On a parting note, I encourage you to investigate the French community in the area. The Association des Francophones de Kitchener-Waterloo ( has a robust listing of businesses, clubs, and activities supporting francophones and francophiles. In your own backyard (yes, Elora), I can grab a cup of coffee, pick up fresh bread, take a cooking class, and visit the doctor while speaking that “dead” language the entire time.

Stephen Van Esch