N.B. bilingual bus debate returns to Court of Appeal
The controversial and sensitive issue of bilingual school buses was back before a judge in Fredericton on Wednesday.
The debate is over whether an officially bilingual province is legally required to have French and English students travel on separate buses.
Moncton-area teacher Jane Sherrard says all children are entitled to become bilingual, and isn’t sure why the focus is on school buses.
"We're a D-rating, and it seems that ministers of education are okay with that," said Sherrard. "If a school bus pulled up in front of a school and said, ‘You can't go on that bus, that bus if for another language,’ it's beyond me.”
Sherrard had applied to be an intervener in the case, along with the People's Alliance Party of New Brunswick, the francophone school districts, and the Francophone Parents Association.
Chief Justice Ernest Drapeau said Wednesday the Court of Appeal may not be the best place to answer that question.
He said it could go to a lower court.
"Either he will decide that … this is not an issue that should be referred to the court, or he might refer it to the Court of Queen's Bench, or he might decide to hear the matter – so we'll have to wait for his decision on that," said Michel Doucet, lawyer for francophone parents and school districts.
Drapeau did not specify when a decision on how to move forward with this case will be made.
With files from CTV Atlantic’s Laura Brown.