The latest news to come out of la belle province will undoubtedly raise some distinctly-groomed eyebrows. Yves Bolduc, Quebec’s minister of education, recently spoke to Le Devoir, and the CBC did us all a favour by translating that silent-letter infested language they call French. It’s a step up from using public money on The Ron James Show.
In the interview, Bolduc discussed upcoming budget cuts that will put pressure on school boards across the province. Senior administrators of the English-language Montreal school boards have said that the impending cuts will worsen the already unsatisfactory amount of reading material offered to students.
Minister Bolduc responded very elegantly. Or, I think he did. French and whatnot. Basically, he said that we all need to chill. Or, as the CBC put it, he said “no child would die or stop reading because of fewer books in school libraries.”
Fair point. You always hear about children dying for the right to an education, but no child has died because their education was crippled by underfunding. So schools have less books. What’s the big deal?
Taking a sensible position, Bolduc fights naysayers, “I would prefer [that libraries] buy fewer books. Our libraries are already well-equipped. Go in the schools. There are books… books that were bought last year, two years ago, 20 years ago.”
Books are books. It’s not like they lose their relevancy. Books– new and old– will teach our kids that Premier Parizeau is playing dirty to try and win next year’s referendum. I could care less whether a book uses modern, sans-serif font.
As always, the left are up-in-arms over the minister’s comments. Premier Couillard (wait..what happened to Parizeau?) quelled unrest by clarifying Bolduc’s statement. “Are there too many or not enough? What’s important is that there are always new books [coming into libraries], that the books are interesting for the children,” he said.
What the hell does that mean? I don’t know. Maybe Quebec’s ministry of education is pushing for iPads in every school, so kids can
play Fruit Ninja download whatever eBooks they want.
Kids are the future. There’s no argument there. They aren’t, however, the current economic backbone of Quebec. It will be awhile before they are. Regardless, Quebec’s current backbone is not under any stress. Sure, we get the occasional slipped disc and/or spinal disc herniation, but you can always just walk that off.
At least, that’s what the books say.