New West students own the podium at annual French-speech contest

New Westminster French immersion students came out on top during the provincial Concours d’art oratoire earlier this month.

The French-speech contest is put on every year by the B.C. and Yukon chapter of Canadian Parents for French, a volunteer-led non-profit aimed at creating French second-language opportunities for all youth across the country.

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The provincial competition was held on May 12 at SFU Surrey and this year, more than 209 kids from across the province made it to provincials, including six students from New Westminster, according to a press release from CPF.

The six provincial finalists who represented New Westminster were:

  • Curtis Lever, Grade 12, New Westminster Secondary School;
  • Monika Arcadi, Grade 9, New Westminster Secondary School;
  • Hannah Brine, Grade 8, École Glenbrook Middle School;
  • Isobel Wright, Grade 7, École Glenbrook Middle School;
  • Kaia Parsons, Grade 6, École Glenbrook Middle School;
  • Sophia Killawee, Grade 6, École Glenbrook Middle School

Of the local finalists, five students earned medals, including Lever, who won gold for his speech Les changements en Arctique (changes in the Artic); Arcadi, who won silver for her speech Le terrorisme n'est-il jamais justifié? (Is terrorism ever justified?); Brine, who won gold and the RésoSanté prize for health subject for L'empathie envers les gens qui en ont besoin (empathy for the people who need it); Parsons, who won gold for Le plastisque (plastic); and Killawee, who won gold for La collision de la terre et de Theia (the collision of Earth and Theia).

“Concours is an outstanding showcase and celebration of excellence in French language education,” said CPF B.C. and Yukon president Greer Cummings in the release.

“Through participation in Concours, students develop their public speaking and relationship building skills in French, and ultimately the confidence to express their ideas clearly. These capacities are highly valued in today’s global society, making these students more adaptable and employable in a dynamic and competitive landscape. As effective communicators, these students will become the leaders of tomorrow.”

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