Promotion of Language Proficiency Among Newcomers in Canada
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Published: Wed, 20 Sep 2017
Son Ian Lam, Candice
a.Is it successful in promoting two official language among newcomers in Canada in recent centuries?
b. the multicultural policy implemented in 1971 and claim to help immigrant learned at least one of the official language. But before this implement, government also help immigrant to learn these two languages.
c. Canada help newcomers in language learning by providing several language program but they also meet obstacles.
- Body paragraph
- Official language programs in Canada have a long history until now. These language programs developed along with the change of immigration and language policy in recent centuries.
- Some may argued newcomers have no time to work while they go to linguistic classes.
- 13% of students were having a full-time job and 13% of students were having a part-time job.
- According to the study of Okrainec, K., et al., there is a small group of immigrants having persistent language barrier (2015).
- 34% of immigrant interviewees revealed that they had persistent language barrier and they had live in Canada for over 15 years.
- Tendency of these interviewees is older, having family in Canada and married.
- Canada government promote the two official languages by subsidizing newcomers to take part in language programs while they meet some difficulties.
- In Canada, a multiculturalism country, these language program funding by government boost the promotion of language proficiency and also help newcomers to integrate in the society and economy quicker.
Is it successful in promoting two official language among newcomers in Canada? After the implement of multiculturalism policy in 1971, newcomers from worldwide come to Canada. Most of the recent immigrants have well language proficiency. However, there still have numerous of newcomers are lacking of language skill. This scarcity of language proficiency might lead them meet difficulties to find a job, to see a doctor or integrate into the society. Government have the responsibility to help immigrants to integrate in economy and society. Government develop linguistic program for newcomers from the old days and they also meet obstacle when promoting the widespread of language proficiency.
Language programs for newcomers funding by federal and provincial government
Official language programs in Canada have a long history until now. These language programs developed along with the change of immigration and language policy. In 1947, Federal government in Canada started a curriculum called CILT (Citizen and Language Instruction and Language Textbook Agreement) for immigrants to develop knowledge and language skills to pass the citizen test (Tollefson, 2002). According to Tollefson, although the supply of this program could not meet the demand, it was hard to know how immigrants understand the instruction and their progress virtually. Soon, the Federal government gave the responsibility to provinces to determine the program content and service (2002). After the Immigration Act at 1967, federal government withdrew the right for province managing education and started a subsidized program called Manpower program which helped immigrants prepare for working (Tollefson, 2002). Immigrants in these language program received 24 weeks training and financial subsidy for living and they were also for higher level education (Tollefson, 2002). In 1969, the Official Language Act declared that there was no clause for people who cannot speak either one official language to learn either one. But sooner in 1971, federal government implement the multiculturalism policy which declared that ‘the government will continue to assist immigrants to acquire at least one of Canadian’s official language in order to become full participants in Canadian society’ (Burnaby, 2008). During 1990, the Manpower program was replaced by LINC (current Language Instruction for Newcomers to Canada) which is for newcomers in the first three years and LMLT (Labor Market Language Training) which is for LINC graduates (Tollefson, 2002).
LINC program works until now. It provides to permanent citizen or refugee for free and participants need to take a language test to know which level they are (Settlement.org, n.d.). The program mostly teach in English and some of the class teach in French. Moreover, some might argue that newcomers have no time to go to class as they need to work. The programs is divided into full time and part time so that students who have a job can also take part in. 13% of students in LINC had a full-time job and 13% of students were having s part-time job (Government of Canada, 2010). According to the survey of Workpermit, 50% of immigrant interviewee reveal they had participated in employment training program and 54.7% had participated in language training program (2012). Additionally, a survey of Government of Canada indicated that 33.6% of students can get a job after taking LINC program and 47.1% improve their English (2010). These statistics reveal that numerous newcomers benefit from these language program no matter their daily life or employment.
Language barrier among immigrants
According to the study of Okrainec, K., et al., there is a small group of immigrants having persistent language barrier. They collected the data of 2323 immigrants who had completed the Canadian Community Health Survey 2007-2008 and been in the CIC data and also self-reported having language barrier. The study found an abundant percentage of immigrants had long term language barrier even they had lived in Canada for longer than 15 years. This group of interviewee tend to be older (mean age of 52), married or having family member in Canada (2015). These individuals might have more difficulties to their daily life. Yet, they were more likely to have social supports like family member or spouse and they were also not in the main workforce in the society because of their elder age.
Canada government promote the two official languages by subsidizing newcomers to take part in language programs overtime even they meet some difficulties. From 1947, Canada start helping newcomers to overcome the language barrier. Until now, the LINC program help more than 60,000 newcomers every year (Government of Canada, 2013). In Canada, a multiculturalism country, these language program funding by government boost the promotion of language proficiency and also help newcomers to integrate in the society and economy quicker. Canada accept multitudinous of immigrants every year and many of them are family reunification. Some of them might not know either one of the language. Yet, those immigrants have relatives for supporting. Newcomers can jump to the workforce more straightforward. It is one of the factor makes multiculturalism success as language can help social integration, individuals speak different language need a mutual language to communicate as the consideration of conforming the multiculturalism policy: ”the government will continue to assist immigrants to acquire at least one of Canadian’s official language in order to become full participants in Canadian society’ (Burnaby, 2008).
Burnaby, B. (2008). Language policy and education in Canada. In Encyclopedia of language and education (pp. 331-341). Springer US.
Statistics Canada. (2013). 2011 National Household Survey: Immigration, place of birth, citizenship, ethnic origin, visible minorities, language and religion. Retrieved from Statistics Canada: http://www.statcan.gc.ca/daily-quotidien/130508/dq130508b-eng.htm
Tollefson, J.W. (Ed). (2002). Language policies in education: critical issues. Mahwah, N.J. : L.
Okrainec, K., Booth, G. L., Hollands, S., & Bell, C. M. (2015). Language Barriers Among the Foreign-Born in Canada: Agreement of Self-Reported Measures and Persistence Over Time. Journal of immigrant and minority health, 1-7.
Workpermit. (2012). Language and employment biggest barriers for new Canadian immigrants. Retrieved from Workpermit: http://www.workpermit.com/news/language-and-employment-biggest-barriers-new-canadian-immigrants-20120725
Settlement.org. (n.d.). What is the Language Instruction for Newcomers to Canada (LINC) program?. Retrieved from Settlement.org: http://settlement.org/ontario/education/english-as-a-second-language-esl/linc-program/what-is-the-language-instruction-for-newcomers-to-canada-linc-program/
Government of Canada. (2013). Backgrounder – Language Instruction for Newcomers to Canada (LINC) Program. Retrieved from Government of Canada: http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/department/media/backgrounders/2013/2013-10-18.asp
Government of Canada. (2010). Evaluation of the Language Instruction for Newcomers to Canada (LINC) Program. Retrieved from Government of Canada: http://www.cic.gc.ca/ENGLISH/resources/evaluation/linc/2010/appendix-a.asp#bftn55
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