François Hollande Asks: Keep Tuition Low for French Students in Québec

François Hollande Asks: Keep Tuition Low for French Students in Québec

Quebec City (Quebec) 5 November 2014 – The president of France was in town this week and among other topics he had to discuss with Premier Philippe Couillard were the tuition fees that foreign students have to pay to attend the provinces universities. Students not from Québec attending local universities have to pay around $6200.00 a year in entrance fees. Up until now, students coming from France pay only the same fees as Québec students because of a special agreement.

By increasing the tuition fees for French students, the Québec government claims it would save about $22 million annually. Right now it costs the Québec government $71.8 million to maintain the status quo for French students; if the increase to $6200 were applied it would only cost Quebec $49.7 million a year. The French president François Hollande, who also addressed the National Assembly during his visit, suggested that because of France’s special relationship with Québec that perhaps French students should be exempt from any increase. To support his theory he underlined that a good number of French youth quite often stay in the province after their studies to work here and contribute to the Québec society as compared to other students who return to their homeland and use their education for their own countries advantage. Of all the foreign students in Québec universities, 38% are from France.

Philippe Couillard was quick to respond that perhaps the same conditions could apply to Québec students who wish to study in France. The two leaders both agreed that Québec and France have a lot in common as far as language, commerce, and culture are concerned, and have consequently always had a strong relationship with each other. Whether or not Québec will maintain the allowance for the fees charged to French students as compared to other countries is up in the air for the moment but, the two parties are willing to discuss the matter further and maybe reach some kind of middle of the road status which could benefit both of them.

Categories: Politics

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