It's good to be a French teacher in Canada right now — a surge in demand for French teachers has school boards across the country looking to fill positions for immersion programs.
Their main targets are new or soon-to-be graduates in post-secondary French education programs. Many school boards are offering fast-track options and multiple full-time positions if candidates contact them right away.
Usually, most provinces recruit French teachers from Quebec. However, because the shortage has become a nationwide problem, some school boards are starting try more creative solutions.
The Halifax Regional School Board was scrambling to fill 33 open positions last September, and has since been encouraging students in education programs to pursue French as an area of expertise.
British Columbia is negotiating with European countries to try to recruit French teachers. The B.C. Education Ministry is sending a delegation this week to try to establish government-to-government agreements with France, Belgium and the Netherlands to promote teacher exchanges.
In Vancouver, the local school board is offering a moving allowance of up to $1,500 to French teacher candidates, as well as temporary accommodation.
Schools in Southern Ontario, on the other hand, are enticing French teacher candidates with the beautiful scenery of the area.
Enrolment in French immersion programs has skyrocketed to 65,000 in the past five years, leaving many places with a shortage of qualified French-speaking educators. In some districts, people have been camping out in line for days trying to get into French immersion programs because the waitlists have become so much longer.
If you're qualified to teach French in Canada and are currently looking for work, it would do you well to reach out to your local school boards.