LCEEQ members had the opportunity to have a better understanding of the proposed preschool programme intended for four and five-year-olds. Christiane Bourdages Simpson, from the Direction de la formation générale des jeunes DFGJ, who is responsible for the creation and implementation of the programme, gave a very informative presentation at the recent June meeting. She explained how the new programme integrates the existing Preschool Programs and the Day Care program. Like the Elementary Program, it is designed over a two-year cycle in order to foster a developmental approach while focusing on five domains: physical and motor, emotional, social, language, and cognitive development.
The programme is centered on three fundamental principles:
- Provide all children with equal opportunities;
- Ensure that each child develops in all the areas;
- Have children develop a feeling of competence and a desire to learn.
Taking into consideration the well-known adage, “It takes a village to raise a child”, the programme incorporates:
- Collaboration with parents
- Recognition of the cultural dimension
- Recognition of the teacher’s expertise
- Planning a smooth transition
In order to provide the best possible opportunities for all children, the programme includes measures to detect and manage developmental delays so as to provide early intervention strategies. The Ministry is presently preparing a plan to provide professional development for teachers who will be implementing the programme.
Following the presentation, the LCEEQ members took some time to consider discussion topics for the coming year. Consideration was given to an number of important issues including; a continued focus on the importance of well being, a better understanding of how minority groups outside of Quebec function in terms of supporting quality educational programmes, employability and the vitality of the English-speaking Educational Community, building partnerships, and continuing to provide quality professional development opportunities. These topics along with others which will emerge in the weeks and months to come will receive the ongoing attention of the Committee.