The PLQ summons the CAQ not to appeal the judgment on Bill 40

The PLQ calls on the CAQ not to appeal the judgment on Bill 40

The Liberal MP for Jacques-Cartier, Gregory Kelley, is one of the signatories of the letter.

In an open letter signed by MPs Gregory Kelley, Marwah Rizqy and André A. Morin to the Minister of Education, Bernard Drainville, the Liberal Party of Quebec (PLQ) asks the government not to on appeal the judgment against Bill 40.

The PLQ's clear opposition to Bill 40 is reiterated in the letter, where it is maintained that Bill 40 would have no effect on “the educational success of students” and that it would not attack “labour shortage” in schools.

The proposal of Bill 40 is to transform school boards into school service centres. A law which is poorly received by the English-speaking community, which would see in it the loss of its ability to manage its education system itself, and which “completely misses the target”, write the deputies in the letter.

The idea that Bill 40 would prejudice the right of linguistic minorities to manage their own education system runs through the PLQ statement. This is also partially the finding of Judge Sylvain Lussier, who raised in a judgment rendered on August 2 that portions of Bill 40 attack this right constitutionally protected by section 23 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Following this verdict, the CAQ government is considering the possibility of appealing the judgment.

Double standards

Section 23 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms protects the educational rights of linguistic minorities across Canada. If it particularly targets Anglophones in Quebec, it also targets Francophones in the rest of Canada, recalls the PLQ.

“In the interest of not undermining the constitutional protections that govern minority language education, protections that equally benefit English-speaking Quebecers and Francophones outside Quebec, we ask that you not appeal the judgment and that any future changes affecting the governance of the English-language school network be the subject of a broad political and institutional consensus,” reads the open letter.

The lack of consensus and public consultations is also part of the judgment rendered by Justice Lussier.

Tackling the core of the problem

For the PLQ, the attack on the constitutional right of linguistic minorities is not worth the effort, especially considering that Bill 40 does not attack what makes “the difference between success and failure” of a student.

For this problem, it would rather be “sustained action in terms of the educational success of students. Bill 40 did not address the labor shortage that compromises the delivery of services to which students are entitled,” believe the signatories of the letter.

The main issues affecting success education, according to the PLQ, are not part of the administrative structure that Bill 40 is trying to shake up. It would rather be “the increase in school dropouts”, the increase in certain failure rates and the worsening of the dilapidation of schools.

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