In August 2014, the Université du Québec à Montréal (UQÀM) hosted the first meeting of a new province-wide, inter-university campaign seeking to recognize the value of educational professionals and compensate internships in the field. The campaign would adopt the acronym CRAIES (meaning “chalk” in French), which stands for Campagne de revendications et d’actions interuniversitaires des étudiantes et étudiants en éducation en stage. This first meeting, attended by Jon Summers on behalf of Concordia’s Graduate Students’ Association (GSA), brought together student reps from as far away as Rimouski and Chicoutimi.
The CRAIES campaign demands that the government of Quebec compensate internships in education an amount equal to $330 per week, indexed to the cost of living, for a period equivalent to the “prise en charge” time allotted by program. This compensation, roughly equivalent to the working hours of a classroom teacher multiplied by the minimum wage, reflects the following elements:
1. the exceptionally large workload of stagiaires in education and the benefits they bring to their cooperating institutions;
2. the additional costs directly linked to internships;
3. the loss of revenue associated with the difficulty of reconciling work and study during internships;
4. the desire of Quebecers to valorize the vocation of educational professionals and teachers in a traditionally female context, and thus contribute to the attainment of equality between women and men; and
5. the obligatory nature of all internships in the preparation of educational professionals and the obtainment of a diploma at the end of studies.
DOEIGSA passed a motion endorsing CRAIES at its September 2014 General Assembly, and has sent student reps to every meeting since then. Most recently, Stella Carolina Stella and Audrey Dahl attended the fourth meeting of the campaign at Université du Québec à Chicoutimi (UQÀC) in February.
This ongoing campaign is just one of the many ways that DOEIGSA serves our members. If you would like to get involved, please speak with one of your student reps.
[updated February 2015]