On March 21st and 22nd, more than 75 teachers from across the province met in Old Quebec for the first Democracy Bootcamp of the year. The event focused on the threat of misinformation and disinformation, as well as the Student Vote program that will be held during the upcoming federal elections.
On the Thursday evening, teachers and experts gathered in a large hall in the Morrin Center where they viewed a panel, participated in a question period, and snacked on the delicious food provided by the caterers. The Morrin Center, a national historic site, formerly serving Quebec City as a prison, but currently as a library, a heritage space, and a cultural centre, was a beautiful backdrop for teachers and experts to mingle. The experts, including Colette Brin, Director of the Centre d’études sur les médias (Center for Media Studies), Louis Baudoin Laarman, a fact-checking journalist for Agence France-Presse, and Thierry Giasson, Senior researcher at the Groupe de recherche en communication politique (Research Group on political communication) heard impactful anecdotes about the effects of misinformation on young people from the teachers.
On the Friday, the bootcamp was held at the Seminary of Quebec, another historical building in Quebec City. The presentations of Camille Lopez, a journalist for L’Actualité, Elections Canada and CIVIX captivated the audience. Afterwards, teachers enjoyed participation in small group discussions as it provided educators with an opportunity to share their best classroom practices. The day came to a close with a panel entitled Behind the Scenes, featuring panelists Karl Bélanger, Jean-Pierre Blackburn, Hélène Chalifour-Scherrer and Dominic Vallières, former politicians and political strategists. Participants appreciated the frank and honest tone of the panellists who shared funny and impactful personal anecdotes about their careers.
CIVIX-Quebec organizes Democracy Bootcamps to prepare educators for the teaching of democracy and citizenship. As the October 2019 federal election is nearly upon us, the next bootcamp will take place in Montreal this August. Are you interested in being a part of the 100 educators receiving this professional development training? If so, send an email to [email protected] today as space is limited. We will be pleased to refund your release time, accommodation, meals and transportation. Do not miss this unique opportunity!