It’s sometimes forgotten that Ontario has four school systems, English Public, English Catholic, French Public and French Catholic. Now, the issue of whether or not that’s an efficient system aside, they each contain students that deserve our very best and we’re all in this together.
Starting with ECOO’s Bring IT Together conference this year, I’ve noticed more of a welcoming attitude to the small French boards in Ontario. This year’s On the Rise K-12 conference, which I have a role in planning, will be the same. As someone who works in one of Ontario’s few remaining school authorities, I can resonate with both a feeling of being left out, and a warm feeling of acceptance when our tiny group is welcomed. The thing is though, the French school system in Ontario isn’t even tiny. It represents over 100 000 students.
It’s my second year of running CourseHelp.ca now and I’m happy about how the popularity has spread and how it’s become a recognisable name in eLearning in Ontario. I’ve been contacted by a few people who asked about the possibility of French resources on the site. Shamefully, it was something that I had never even considered, but I certainly thought it was a great idea when it was suggested. Since I don’t speak French myself (something I’d like remedy), it’s not something I could do alone. Fortunately, I was able to connect with Johanne Ste-Croix (@JohanneSteCroix) through my Twitter network. She’s an educational technology consultant with a French board, and she volunteered to translate materials on CourseHelp.ca as this was something her board was looking for.
So we’re on our way. Our French verssion, À la rescousse! is now live on CourseHelp. We just have a few translations up there now, but Johanne plans to continue translating the written resources on the site.
I use Google Sites for Coursehelp since it’s incredibly easy for linking to Google docs, and embedding videos and slideshows, but, I’m unable to remove the english CourseHelp title from the French page. So, unfortunately, the French title appears underneath the English one. Perhaps not the best political statement there, but it will have to do for now. Later, as the French resources increase, I can make the French version a sort of sister site with its own header and French domain.
If anyone out there wants to be involved in the translating project, send me a message through the Contact Me page on this site and I’ll get you in touch with Johanne. It would be especially nice if there was someone interested in recreating the screencast videos as well.