I have a real interest in the French culture. This stems for my childhood. I started my education in Montreal. where I was exposed to the French language. I spoke it really well, however, my family and I moved to Toronto. While in Toronto, I only spoke French and was encouraged to learn English only.
As I went through school, French became less of a priority for me. However, when I started working, I realized how important the language was living in Canada. It really makes you marketable in your career living in Canada.
Because of my earlier exposure to French, I have basic knowledge of the language. I have started reading books, listening to the radio and watching television in French. I could say I am now able to understand it really well. I still need some work on speaking it and I have started to practice with colleagues who are bilingual.
So I am definitely an advocate for having the french language as a mandatory course until high school.
I recently found an article in the July 5, 2013, Globe and Mail: