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Are we eligible for English Public schools in Montreal?

NAVSINGH's picture
By NAVSINGH - Posted on
15 March 2017

We are an Indian family, planning to move to Montreal in 2017 and will stay there for some years. My daughter will be 6.8 Years as on 30-Sep' 17 and my son will be 4.3 years as on 30-Sep' 17. Currently both goes in English medium schools in Mumbai, India. They can not speak French but my younger son started learning basics as part his current curriculum. Some of my concerns and questions are:
1. Are they eligible for Public English schools? If yes, then can someone guide which are better schools as I will decide my residence on that basis. Is there a tuition fee, as I heard education is free in Canada?
2. If they are not eligible, then I don't think I can opt for International Board as it would be very expensive. Then what are the good French public schools in Montreal main city?
3. How difficult or easy for them to adjust in French speaking schools? Are they bilingual till the time kids are comfortable in French?
4. Are there any good public schools which have better reviews of accommodating non French speaking kids initially?
We know the challenge but we are ready to accept the language challenge but just want to understand, what are some tips to cope better.

Thanks in advance!

Meagan's picture
Last seen: 15 hours 34 min ago
Joined: 07/07/2016

Living in:
Cape Town, South Africa

Cape Town, South Africa

Hi Nav,

While I can't provide recommendations of any specific schools, you might find this forum post useful for the rest of your questions, as I answered some quite similar questions recently here:

The short answer is that you will probably not be eligible for English-language public schools in Montreal. In French public schools, there may be some support for English speakers but it's difficult to estimate the extent of that support. For some more info on the schooling system, have a look at the Expat Arrivals Education and Schools in Montreal page.

You may want to consider looking into subsidised private schools as an alternative to international schools.

Have you secured employment there already? If you're relocating for work, you may be able to negotiate an education allowance as part of your relocation package.

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NAVSINGH's picture
Last seen: 40 weeks 6 days ago
Joined: 04/08/2016

Thank you Meagan

That was a nice tip to look for - subsidized private schools.


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alinnajain1's picture
Last seen: 44 weeks 2 days ago
Joined: 15/03/2017

i think not eligible for English-language public schools in Montreal.

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NAVSINGH's picture
Last seen: 40 weeks 6 days ago
Joined: 04/08/2016

Thank you...Can someone please explain from my original post, my daughter who is currently 6.5 years will be eligible for which Grade in Academic year 2017-18? Similarly my son who will be 4 years in Jun' 17, will be eligible for which grade for AY 17-18?

Thank you in advance!


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Anonymous's picture

Hi, i recently posted the same question about our children as we are also moving to Montreal but not for as long. We contacted the English School Board of Montreal and found that because we are going on study visas ( sabbatical) we are able to send our children to english speaking schools. I got the impression that if we had been on working visas we wouldn't have been able to. It might be worth contacting them to confirm? Hannah

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