The admissions process for schools always begins one year in advance. For example, if you are applying for the 2019/2020 academic year, you must submit your application in 2018. All private schools open their admissions in October, and close in January, allotting a 4-month window to both international and local students to submit their candidacy. While that may sound like a narrow time frame, parents who begin the process too late may end up with very little choice due to schools reaching their classroom capacity.



In Quebec, there are over 150 Public schools in total. These schools span across all cities, including off-island regions. English and French Public schools in Montreal do not have any standards of acceptance, require no entrance exams, or conduct any interviews prior to accepting students. Although international students are eligible to attend Public schools, they do not have the right to definitively choose their school, rather, they are permitted to suggest their top 4 schools of interest, and must wait until they are placed in a school that has the spacing for them, as well as a school that they are geographically zoned for. International students are required to pay a fee for their studies in the English public system but are exempt in the French public schools. This is dependent on each student’s visa status and grade level they will enroll in. Students entering the public system are held back in studies 1-2 years and are placed in what is called a class d’aceuil. The objective of the class d’aceuil is to teach students the French language and re-integrate them into the regular program once they are capable of following the curriculum.


In quebec, there are over 60 private schools to choose from. These include english and french private schools. unlike the public system, private schools have a high standerd of acceptance and filter in students that academically compliment the schools program. Most private schools require an interview with both the parents and children, as well as a written evaluation, testing students english proficiency and math skills. Unlike the public system, private schools do not hold students back a grade regardless of their level in english and/or french. Rather, students are placed in a beginner english and/or frech program that is designed to provide them with the help they require. This program is for 1 year. After its completion, students are placed in the regular english and french classes. Eligibility to attend a private school is strictly dependent on a students legal status. Although certain schools may be labeled as private, there are those that are not fully private and therefore subsidized by the government, enforcing the language by-laws of quebec.



Transitionong to a new country is perhaps one of the most life changing decisions someone can make. Everything is new and unfamiliar, including the culture and main languages of the country. Students, whether at the primary or secondary levels, face these challenges at a great extent. With this in mind, it is important to allow students 1 year to develop and integrate into this new enviornement. It is possible that their academics may not yield the best results that they are capable of achieving, as the program may be more intensive and the new language a barrier challenge. For these reasons, parents and students alike should not put unrealistic goals on themselves. Instead, the main objectives within the first year should be focused toward learning french and/or english, getting accustomed to the new enviornment, making friends, and overall, gaining the confidence one needs in order to flourish.

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