Education

French programs

Student programs

French Immersion

Engelure, the French programs cultural activities mascot French Immersion promotes and supports bilingual education. It began in Canada in the 1970s and was established in Yukon in 1981.

French Immersion varies from school to school. The amount of English that is taught in the first few grades of French Immersion is an example of how the approach can vary.

French Immersion is intended for students whose first language is not French. The goal of the program is to provide non-French speakers with the opportunity to become fluent in both English and French.

Grade 12 graduates of the French Immersion program should be able to continue their studies or work in English and French.

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Watch videos about French Immersion in Yukon

Early and Late French Immersion

Early French Immersion starts in Kindergarten or Grade 1. The goal of the program is to provide as immersive a French language environment as possible for students.

  • Little or no English is used in Kindergarten.
  • English Language Arts as a subject is typically introduced in Grade 4 but may start earlier.

Late French Immersion starts in Grade 6 and also aims to provide as immersive an environment is possible for students.

  • No formal English is taught in Grade 6.
  • English Language Arts is reintroduced in Grade 7.
  • Students can move on to the high school French Immersion program in Grade 8 with those who started the program in Kindergarten or Grade 1.

The expectations and Grade 12 outcomes of Early and Late Immersion are the same: Both groups of students should be able to continue their studies or work in either or both languages at graduation.

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French Immersion schools

Early French Immersion (with Kindergarten and Grade 1 entry points) is offered at École Whitehorse Elementary School in downtown Whitehorse and Selkirk Elementary School in Riverdale.

Late French Immersion (Grade 6 entry) is offered only at École Whitehorse Elementary.

Secondary school French Immersion continues for grades 8 to 12 at F.H. Collins Secondary School.

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Compare Early Immersion programs

Student expectations and outcomes are the same in both schools, but there are some different features:

École Whitehorse Elementary School is a single-track French Immersion school.

  • French is the dominant language in the school:
    • Announcements are made in French.
    • Teachers and other staff communicate with one another and with students in French.
    • Assemblies are conducted in French.
    • Learning Assistants (LAs), Educational Assistants (EAs) and counsellors speak French.
  • French is the sole language of instruction in the Kindergarten classroom.
  • Subjects such as physical education, music, and information technology are also taught in French.
  • At the start of Grade 1, students receive up to 90 minutes of English literacy instruction (word study, reading and writing). As they reach certain benchmarks, the amount of English is reduced and reading instruction switches to French.
  • At the start of Grades 2 and 3, students receive up to 60 minutes of English literacy instruction (word study, reading and writing). As they reach certain benchmarks, the amount of English is reduced and reading instruction switches to French.

Selkirk Elementary School is a dual-track school offering both English and French Immersion programs.

  • As much as possible, communication with French Immersion students is in French. However, both English and French are used in the school:
    • Most PA announcements are made in English.
    • Many teachers and other staff communicate with one another and with students in English.
    • Assemblies and concerts are conducted in English but include student presentations in both languages.
    • Learning Assistants (LAs), Educational Assistants (EAs) and counsellors may speak English or French.
  •  French is the sole language of instruction in the Kindergarten classroom.
  • There is a French-language choir.
  • Subjects such as physical education, music and information technology are taught in English. (This could change in future years.)
  • Reading instruction in Grade 1 is in French.

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French Immersion curriculum

For more information about French Immersion curriculum (available in French only), visit:

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French programs

Yukon Education
Box 2703
Whitehorse, Yukon
Canada Y1A 2C6

Tel: 867-667-8610
Toll free (In Yukon): 1-800-661-0408, local 8610
Fax: 867-393-6339
Email: Yann.Herry@gov.yk.ca

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