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A Quebec flag flaps in the sky during the Moulin a Parole, a 24-hour long series of public readings, on the Plains of Abraham in Quebec City, September 13, 2009.

REUTERS/Mathieu Belanger

Universities fight to keep English education alive in Quebec

Concordia University announced it would join its fellow Montreal-based university, McGill, in providing financial aid of up to CA$4,000 to students from other provinces as a way of offsetting the impact of the Quebec government’s controversial new efforts to protect local Francophone culture.

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A graphic showing English-French bilingualism in Canada.

GZERO Media/ Luisa Vieria

The Graphic Truth: English-French bilingualism in Canada

Parlez-vous le français? Probably pas très bien if you live outside Quebec, according to census data from Statistics Canada.

The share of Canadians who can hold a conversation in both English and French has plateaued around 18% for two decades, despite strong legal protections for the French language and official encouragement of bilingualism.

The background: Political rivalries between English and French-speaking Canadians dominated the early history of the country, and fuel some radical independence movements in Quebec even today. Official adoption of bilingualism at a federal level in 1969 was meant to help heal the rift.

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Annie Gugliotta

Hard Numbers: Ethiopian reconstruction, Russia’s surprising surplus, French jailed in Iran, Colombia’s Petro in pole position

300 million: Ethiopia is set to receive a $300 million grant from the World Bank to rebuild areas of the country destroyed by the war between government forces and Tigray militants. The conflict began in November 2020 and spread to other neighboring regions last year. Both sides have been accused of war crimes, but a ceasefire in March has held up well enough to allow for reconstruction to begin.

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