No matter when the student enters a classroom, teachers are able to offer them the required support in order to be successful.
The Ministry of Education policy document The Ontario Curriculum French As a Second Language: Core French Grades 1-8, 2013 (p. 15) states that Core French is mandatory for all students in Ontario from Grades 4-8.
“Core French is mandatory from Grades 4 to 8 for all students in English-language elementary schools. Students entering Grade 4 must receive French instruction in every year from Grade 4 to Grade 8 and must have accumulated a minimum of 600 hours of French instruction by the end of Grade 8. Once an instructional sequence has begun, the program must continue uninterrupted to Grade 8.”
The document Supporting English Language Learners: A practical guide for Ontario Teachers: Grades 1-8, 2008 (p.31) presents the idea that learning English and French at the same time is helpful in reinforcing the skills that students learn in English. Reinforcing the use of oral language by exposing the students to “practical, everyday French” helps to contribute to their ability to learn language.
"Questions parents ask…
I worry about my son learning French at the same time as he is learning English. Shouldn’t he be concentrating on only one language?
You might think that he would get confused if he learns French at the same time as he is learning English, but, in fact, the opposite is true. Many of the items taught in French may parallel what students are learning in English, so learning French can help to reinforce the English that they are learning. Children who are learning the English language are likely to feel successful since all students in Ontario are learning French as a second language, and the focus is on oral language using practical, everyday French. Students are able to transfer knowledge about how language works and this may contribute to their overall academic success.”