Québec, March 28, 2017. – Québec must invest in its young people by supporting them from early childhood through higher education so that they can fulfill their potential in a constantly changing world. The March 2017 Québec Economic Plan is fully attuned to this outlook by advancing numerous initiatives to ensure their educational success, offer them quality training and develop a workforce that satisfies labour market needs.
An initial educational success policy for our young people
The March 2017 Québec Economic Plan provides for a total of $3.4 billion in additional investments over the next five years. In follow-up to the consultations held in fall 2016 aimed at developing an initial educational success policy for Québec, the government is implementing measures that will make it possible to work with young people, more specifically those with difficulties. Briefly, the planned investments will total:
- $130 million to encourage educational success starting in early childhood;
- $1.8 billion to enhance support for students throughout their school path;
- 1,5 billion for higher education to enhance the quality of training, increase the higher education graduation rate and better financially support students.
Thanks to these additional sums, the budgets devoted to young people from early childhood through higher education will total $20 billion in 2017-2018.
$130 million devoted to early childhood
The $130 million in investments devoted to early childhood will make it possible to:
- enhance educational intervention aimed at young children;
- facilitate children’s transition to school;
- support community organizations that offer activities to families;
- develop services adapted to the needs of children with disabilities
$1.8 billion to guide young people toward success
More than $1.8 billion will be invested in schools to guide young people toward success. The initiatives planned are designed to:
- allow youngsters to get off to a good start in kindergarten and Grade 1;
- provide help to elementary schools for more effective implementation of individual education plans for students with difficulties;
- support parents in order to prevent learning disabilities;
- enhance support for students in high school, vocational training and adult education programs;
- support initiatives designed to boost literacy and francization.
$1.5 billion to better prepare young people for their future
To offer young people quality higher education, $1.5 billion in investments are planned in order to:
- improve the graduation rate and success by, among other things, hiring more professors in universities;
- offer appropriate support to students with special needs;
- promote the attraction of international students;
- promote partnerships and collaboration between institutions and enhance their regional presence.
$290 million to satisfy labour market needs
Québec must develop a workforce that satisfies labour market needs. The Rendez-vous national sur la main-d’œuvre in February 2017 helped to clearly delineate the main challenges facing Québec in order to ensure a dynamic, balanced and efficient labour market. For this purpose, the Québec Economic Plan provides for measures totalling nearly $290 million over five years and designed to:
- promote trades that are in demand and encourage young people to shift toward those trades;
- support labour market integration for immigrants;
- support continuing education and the development of worker skills;
- support businesses in the management of their labour force.
Educational success is our priority, because it is the key lever for Québec’s social and economic development. Thanks to the implementation of the educational success policy, our young people will get off to a good start as of kindergarten and parents will have the necessary support to prevent learning difficulties.
Furthermore, the sums reserved for higher education will guarantee better access for young people to education so as to better prepare for their future. In this way, we will support them throughout their school path so that they can develop and fulfill their potential.
Finally, with the demographic challenge more pressing than ever, we must mobilize the necessary means to face up to it. This is what we are doing by responding quickly to the main recommendations stemming from the Rendez-vous de la main d’œuvre.
– Carlos Leitão, Minister of Finance of Québec
- nearly $130 million in investments over the next five years to encourage educational success starting in early childhood, which will be used, in particular, to improve interventions for children in underprivileged neighbourhoods and enhance measures aimed at the integration of children with disabilities into childcare services;
- beginning September 2017, nearly 1 500 additional staff to provide direct services to students and support them in their learning path. This number will gradually rise to 7 200 within five years;
- in high school, vocational training and adult education programs, additional resources, including psychoeducators, will be added to assist teachers and support students in their schooling;
- in higher education, beginning September 2017, the reinvestment will provide CEGEPs and universities with sufficient resources to hire some 500 persons to provide training and support for students;
- nearly $290 million in investments to enable Québec to develop a workforce that satisfies labour market needs.