Language and enumeration of children of rights-holders

In preparation for the 2021 Census, Statistics Canada conducted a content consultation from fall 2017 to spring 2018 using an online questionnaire and face-to-face discussions.

Consultation respondents and various federal stakeholders requested that the census collect information on all three criteria indicated in section 23 (23[1], 23[1][b] and 23[2]) of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms to enumerate children of rights-holders.

You asked, we listened

As a result of national consultations with interested parties, Statistics Canada has included new questions on language of instruction to enumerate children of rights-holders in the 2019 Census Test.

The enumeration of children of rights-holders—parents who have the constitutional right to request educational services in French outside Quebec and in English in Quebec under section 23 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms—was a frequently reported data gap.

You asked for Proposed content for the 2019 Census Test
Information about the children of rights-holders New questions to better identify the number of eligible children to be educated in the minority official language in their province or territory of residence.
Data that better reflect the increasing number of Canadians reporting more than one language as a mother tongue, home language or language of work

Revised questions for mother tongue and languages spoken at home and at work, to:

  • decrease respondent burden and question redundancy
  • better capture multiple responses.

Respondents said that, if these data were available, schoolboards, provincial and territorial governments, parents, and communities would be better able to identify children whose parents have the constitutional right under section 23 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms to have their children receive their primary and secondary education in French schools outside Quebec and in English schools inside Quebec, as well as to better plan educational programs to serve the needs of rights-holder parents.

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