The new education minister, Bernard Drainville, said finding solutions to manpower shortages in the school network would be the “biggest professional challenge” of his life.
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Many of the problems affecting teachers and students, such as too many classes and a significant number of students with special needs, could be at least partially solved if there were no shortage of staff, emphasized Bernard Drainville in an interview with TVA Nouvelles. .
“It becomes a labor issue. There is a shortage of teachers, a shortage of special educators, a shortage of specialists,” he said.
The minister also says that he feels that he is responsible for solving the shortage of staff. “Which ones? I’m not ready to say, but definitely I want to try things. I want to offer something different than what we’ve done.”
“If we can make progress to at least partially solve the shortage problem, we will be happy,” he added.
But the minister also recognizes that the school network is grappling with many other problems such as dilapidation of schools and lack of adequate information system.
“I see the mountain, it’s worse, worse,” sighed Bernard Drainville, though he consoled himself by saying that people knew what must be done.
“People see the challenge. Everyone I meet says, “Hey boy, you got it, you’re magic!” He said that he knows the difficulties of the people.
So Bernard Drainville doesn’t promise to fix everything, but he does go so far as to “eat the elephant one bite at a time.”
“If we can improve a little bit, there are a lot of people who will be happy about that,” he said.
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