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International Students

Persons Accompanying you to Quebec

Exceptionally, persons accompanying an international student to Quebec may apply to receive a CAQ as well as study and work permits without having to leave Canada. It is necessary for minor children who accompany their parents to obtain a CAQ [Québec Certificate of Acceptance] and a study permit to attend a school in Quebec. Spouses of international students may obtain a work permit for the duration of their spouse’s academic studies.


The Education System

In Quebec, pre-school, primary and secondary education are offered in public and private establishments. The duration of primary school is six years, and secondary school studies are five years in length.

Contact the private school’s administrative staff directly to register your child, and contact the school board (organization that oversees public schools) if you wish to enroll your child in a public school. For more information, consult the Fédération des commissions scolaires du Québec (Fr) website.

The education system in Quebec includes a type of educational establishment unique in the world: the collège d’enseignement général et professionnel (CEGEP). This level follows the completion of high school and represents the first level of post-secondary education. The second level of post-secondary education is university.

University education is divided into three cycles of study. The first cycle, from 3 to 4 years in duration, leads to a Bachelor degree. The second cycle, which lasts one and a half to two years, leads to a Master’s degree. The third cycle, from 3 to 5 years in duration, leads to a Ph.D. degree. By analogy, the university Bachelor degree corresponds to the diplôme de licence in the French system.

For more information consult the commission scolaire pages in your telephone directory’s Yellow Pages section, and the following website.

Puce Ministère de l’Éducation du Québec Site externe


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Day-care and Childcare Services in the Region

To help parents meet both their family and professional responsibilities, the Government of Quebec has created a network of day-care services that include a variety of resources such as the centres de la petite enfance (CPE) and day-care centres. CPEs and day-care centres must hold a permit from the ministère de la Famille, des Aînés et de la Condition féminine and must comply with the requirements of the law that govern them. The majority of day-care services offer spaces at a reduced rate. However, demand is high and the waiting lists are long. People must often wait one or two years before a space becomes available in one of these services. If you want to register your child, do it when you arrive in Quebec or at the start of a pregnancy.

For more details, click on the following links:

Puce Ministère de la Famille, des Aînés et de la Condition féminine (Fr) Site externe
Puce Réseau d’informations pour le service de garde au Québec Site externe


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Last update : July-01-10