To kick off “Hooked on School Days” across Quebec on Monday, the Réseau québécois pour la réussite educative (RQRÉ) published the results of a survey saying, among other things, that 77 per cent of youth surveyed were feeling optimistic about their future. Although that might seem to stand in stark contrast to the results of a study released by the Université de Sherbrooke just last week indicating a very low level of optimism in a similar age group, the coordinator of the group that plans Hooked on School Days in the Townships each year said that the results are not as contradictory as they seem.
“The difference is that the Leger survey asked students to look ahead to their future,” said Josianne Bergeron of Projet PREE, who shared that the organization reached out to the U de S research team after they published their results to ask about the difference in outlook. Bergeron discouraged comparison, pointing out that the survey was a one-time poll with a smaller sample size rather than a scientific analysis, but she also pointed out that the university’s research was more about feelings in the moment. “It is possible to be pessimistic right now, but still hope for the future,” she explained.
Questions of optimism aside, Bergeron said that the other findings of the RQRE survey are very worth considering, notably the fact that that 47 per cent of the 500 respondents said that they feel negatively impacted by the pandemic and nearly one in three young people (32 per cent) has considered dropping out of school as a result.
Subscribe to The Record for the full story and more