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Pan-Canadian framework for cultural appropriation in French-language schools

Isabelle Gascon
Government of Saskatchewan


The pan-Canadian framework for cultural appropriation in French-language schools [Cadre pancanadien pour l'appropriation de la culture dans les écoles de langue française] is the third project for the Consortium for the Pan-Canadian French as a First Language Project, an initiative of the Council of Ministers of Education, Canada (CMEC). The framework targets cultural appropriation and identity building, two key areas for educational projects at French-language schools in minority settings. The framework will include the following four components:

  1. a document on foundational concepts for a cultural approach to teaching (foundations);
  2. a bank of cultural referents (modelling);
  3. teaching strategies (cultural approach to teaching); and
  4. an information kit (interventions).

The effects of this framework will be to celebrate diversity in Canada and help students from French-language schools in minority settings acquire Francophone culture in all its diversity. Saskatchewan and Ontario are spearheading this project.

This article provides an overview of the document on foundational concepts for a cultural approach to teaching [Document de fondements pour une approche culturelle de l'enseignement]. The vision of the project is to develop a contemporary Francophone culture that integrates local, provincial, territorial, regional Go to note 1, pan-Canadian and global influences.

The first component (foundations) presents the main themes and concepts underlying the framework. These concepts include

  • the Francophone space, which is crucial to the appropriation and transmission of Francophone culture in French-language schools;
  • identity building, as defined by the Association canadienne d'éducation de langue française (ACELF); and
  • culture, whose key elements provide a basis for understanding the model for cultural appropriation presented in the second component.

The second component (modelling) represents and describes how people acquire a culture as well as the dynamic and multidimensional process through which they can acquire a Francophone culture in the context of the Francophonie in Canada.

The third component (cultural approach to teaching) presents the elements that support a cultural approach to teaching in educational practices. These elements include lessons learned from research, a policy statement, promotion of the cultural role of key stakeholders, creation of a plan for the integration of cultural referents in teaching and promotion of a shared cultural leadership.

Finally, the fourth component (interventions) gives an overview of the two-tiered intervention structure: (1) interventions related to study programs and pedagogical resources to support teaching; and (2) interventions related to educational practices, cultural activities and community development. This intervention structure aims to foster a cultural approach to teaching in French-language schools in minority settings.

The four components are scheduled to be released in March 2013.

Return to note 1 Regional: reference to Canada's regions: Western Canada (British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba); Central Canada (Ontario, Quebec); Eastern Canada (New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, Newfoundland); and Northern Canada (Yukon, Northwest Territories, Nunavut) (Return to original note 1.)