The return to class of CEGEP students hurts employers

Already hard hit by the labor shortage, players in the tourism industry want to relaunch the debate on the date of the start of the school year. The session could start after labor dayas for the University, rather than these days.

The director general of Tourisme Chaudière-Appalaches, Richard Moreau, agrees. All this working force there returning to CEGEP means fewer people in companies, as the season continues. It is certain that it causes pressure and financial losses.

According to Mr. Moreau, the situation is more damaging in the regions, while students go to schools in major centres, and that creates a void.

But the problem does not spare the major centers. Richard Bernier is the owner of the Lifeguard Service. The lifeguard rental agency for more than 200 pools in the province was forced to abandon several in the middle of August. The lack of manpower has, among other things, caused the closure of swimming pools in condos in the region, which require the presence of lifeguards.

Review the calendar

Mr. Moreau wonders about the leave configuration. He thinks the school weeks before Labor Day should be placed in January, shortening the break between the fall and winter terms.

Without being an education expert, Mr. Bernier points out that, in his view, education is more conducive in January than in mid-August. He adds that young people can take advantage of the end of summer more than the month of January to raise money.

The Chaudière-Appalaches tourism director wants the school calendar review committee that once existed to come back to life to put pressure on Quebec.

The Fédération des cégeps replies that the regulation on the system of college studies prevents the modification of the calendar. The General and Vocational Colleges Act requires colleges to offer at least two sessions of a minimum of 82 days between July 1 and June 30.

Academic success must be prioritized in the tourism sectorindicates the Federation of CEGEPs.

Betting on more global initiatives

Whether all initiatives to preserve the workforce are desirablefor Alupa Clarke, general manager of the Hotel Association of the Quebec region, the problem is too large to tackle the calendar.

Priority must be given to more global initiatives such as investing in targeted and coordinated international recruitment, focusing on the return of seniors to the labor market, promoting the hospitality sector more to young peoplehe points out.

According to Clarke, massive investment is needed to run recruitment advertising campaigns and prepare the campaigns now for the summer of 2023.

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