Hundreds of jobs for French teachers up for grabs at job fair
Joanne Schnurr, CTV Ottawa
Published Monday, February 12, 2018 4:59PM EST
Last Updated Monday, February 12, 2018 6:54PM EST
Imagine walking right out of university and into a full time job.
That’s what is in the cards for hundreds of graduating French teachers in Ottawa: being wooed at a job fair today. The University of Ottawa graduates several hundred from its program every couple of years.
They are in high demand with many confident they'll land an offer even before they leave school.
It seems everyone wants to meet graduating student Sophie Boissy. And not just her, but all the graduating teachers at this French job fair at the University of Ottawa; ready to meet and to hire.
“Do you think you'll get a job right away?” Boissy is asked? “Yes,” she replies confidently, “they want to hire and I’m ready to move wherever to find a job.”
It's an enviable position to be in, to have the pick of where you want to work, whether it's the bustling metropolis of Vancouver or a tiny school board in northern Alberta. Lakeland Catholic School Board is northeast of Edmonton,
“We come every year to this job fair,” says Pamela Guilbault with Lakeland Catholic School Board, “and this is our 7th fair in last 3 weeks.”
While English teaching jobs are harder to come by in Ontario, there is a shortage of French positions both here and across the country.
Kate Ham is with the Ottawa Carleton District School Board, “For French teachers, we are looking for hundreds,” she says, “We have many unfilled assignments for French teaching classes, so as many as we can get.”
In B.C., a Supreme Court ruling last year enforced smaller classroom sizes and created an immediate demand for hundreds of teachers, giving student Alain Fils Nguepkap something actively to consider.
“My first choice is Vancouver, yes,” he says.
While the city itself is an easy sell, the cost of living there means a teacher's salary doesn't go far. For the first time, the Vancouver District School Board is offering a $1500 moving allowance as an incentive to anyone arriving from another province.
“It is a tough sell,” says Adrian Keough, with the Vancouver School Board, “but we're promoting Vancouver as best we can; it’s a lifestyle change.”
That's certainly what Noelie Yaogo (ywo-go) is looking for. Originally from Africa, she's considering moving to the prairies.
“It’s cold there? I don't mind it,” she says, “providing I can earn my living and be living freely. If there is peace and freedom only.”
For some, they will walk right in to a full time job.
“We're really in dire need of French speaking teachers out west,” says Marcel Lizotte with the Conseil des Écoles Fransaskoises, “not just Saskatchewan but all of the western provinces.”
That means graduating students like Sophie Boissy will have their pick of choices.
“You can go everywhere you want,” she says, “There are no limits today.”
There is a job fair for Anglophone teachers at the university on Wednesday.