Photo cred - Jon J Lewis
Many have railed against McGill and Concordia for years for making Montreal too Anglophone, but, unfortunately for them, things could soon shift even further in that direction. As the Gazette reports, starting in September, international students from France will have to pay as much as out of province students from Canada. Previously, they were given in-province tuition, which was about a third of what their new annual fee will be. The over 12,000 French students studying in Quebec every year will be affected by the hike.
As I’ve discussed previously, the Quebec government could use some help with its finances, and this could be a perfect opportunity. On the flipside, the city may become more Anglo, due to the French students who’ll be discouraged from studying here.
As a result, some Quebecois who see themselves as staunch defenders of French in the city may be unhappy with the move. FEUQ president Jonathan Bouchard has already spoken out against it, and it’s only a matter of time before more francophones begin registering their displeasure.
However, we all need to recognize that the city evolves, and through a financial point of view, it might be in the city’s interest for it to become more anglophone through this measure. If we’re going to consider a measure as extreme as Lucienne Robillard’s proposed $2.3 billion budget cuts, we might as well start with something as simple as raising tuition for a group whose discount doesn’t necessarily benefit the city.
McGill and Concordia could soon have populations which skew en more heavily anglophone, and that’s just fine. Change is natural, and people shouldn’t get in the way of changes that will help the city's finances.