Considering that Canada's official bilingualism policy is costing Canadians 16 thousand million Canadian dollars per year and is showing such a dismal rate of success of only 15%, what do you think we could do to bring this to the attention of our Ministries of Education, especially when we consider that, as European research shows, more efficient second-language acquisition policies do exist that could not only save Canada money, but save the EU about 25 thousand million euros per year on second-language acquisition alone?
According to Statistics Canada's 2006 sensus (http://www40.statcan.gc.ca/l01/cst01/demo15-eng.htm), only about 15% of Canadians (i.e. 5,448, 850 out of 31,241,030 Canadians) assess themselves to know both English and French, in spite of the fact that according to the Canadian Taxpayers' Federation, official bilingualism costs Canada about 16 thousand million Canadian dollars per year, including local, provincial, territorial, federal, and private sector spending (http://languagefairness.ca)(this site is somewhat prejudiced against French-speakers, but its statistical data is still valid).
This means that it costs the taxpayer an average of CAN$2936.40 per year to teach one person English successfully or hire him to offer his translation or interpretation services to the other 85% of Canadians who have failed to learn it.
Yet according to Professor Francois Grin, a specialist in language economics of the University of Geneva, Switzerland, if the EU switched to Esperanto as opposed to English as its main language of international communication, it could save the EU (including the UK and Ireland) 25 thousand million Euros per year on second-language acquisition costs alone (http://cisad.adc.education.fr/hcee/documents/rapport_Grin.pdf) (available only in French and Esperanto unfortunately)! This doesn't include translation costs saved as a result of a higher success rate owing to the language being easier to learn, helping at the same time to reduce the gap between linguistic classes (according to the same report, the EU is subsidizing the UK economy by from 17 to 18 thousand million Euros per year through second-language acquisition costs alone, in spite of the fact that the UK is the wealthiest member of the EU per capita), and helping to protect endangered languages of the EU owing to the reduced time they would need to invest in learning the common EU language, which they could then invest in their own language.
Likewise in his report, Professor Grin points out that through his investigations, he'd found that many Ministries of Education had no official second-language acquisition policy, in spite of the fact that it has such a significant impact on the international economy. And in thosse cases in which there was such a policy, it was often no longer than a paragraph long, sometimes as short as a sentence long, and usually uncritically written.
One of few exceptions to such uncritically written second-language acquisition policies is Italy's (http://www.internacialingvo.org/public/study.pdf), a 26-page-long decree (at least in its English translation), analyzing in detail the social, economic, cultural, political, and other objectives of the policy, and how how well it stands up to linguistic research. It also fully conforms to UNESCO resolutions (http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0012/001240/124020e.pdf) and conforms to increasing international support (http://portal.unesco.org/culture/en/ev.php-URL_ID=38420&URL_DO=DO_TOPIC&URL_SECTION=201.html).
Unfortunately, when I'd e-mailed the Ontario Ministry of Education inquiring about its official second-language acquisition policy, it essentially stated only that all children in Ontario must learn English and French. Beyond that, there was no explanaiton as to its objectives, no research base presented, no cost analysis, and (since no clear objective was laid out anyway) no study to show how effective the policy was fulfilling the objectives.