Vingoe: Liberals would put French immersion programs in Dartmouth at risk

September 23, 2013

(Dartmouth, N.S.) NDP candidate for Dartmouth South Mary Vingoe says comments made by Karen Casey, Liberal education critic and former Rodney MacDonald Education Minister, regarding French immersion are a concern for families in Dartmouth.

 In January of 2011, Casey was quoted as saying: “Kids who are in French immersion, early French immersion, by the time they get to Grade 6 they’re fully bilingual … Is French immersion something that needs to stay on the table from P-12?”

Vingoe says while McNeil has made grand statements about school board funding he still hasn’t addressed Casey’s comments about French immersion beyond grade 6.

“The fact of the matter is, Stephen McNeil hasn’t provided details on his plans for education. He wants to give money to school boards but when he’s asked what he’ll do in the classroom all he says is he will study it. All we can take from that is the Liberals will study Casey’s idea to get rid of french immersion programs at schools like Dartmouth High, Prince Arthur Junior High, Ellenvale Junior High and Caledonia Junior High.”

Vingoe says much like the Liberal plan for health care the the Liberals could be planning a return to the deep cuts of the 1990s.

“On health care Stephen McNeil is essentially proposing to copy the failed Liberal super board model of the 1990s that resulted in more bureaucracy and the loss of 1,600 hospital beds and over 1,000 nurses. It’s fair to assume Stephen McNeil will also copy the last Liberal government that got rid of 1,400 teachers and rolled back the salaries of the teachers who remained.”

Vingoe says the Liberal record in Nova Scotia is “something we don’t want to risk repeating.”