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LETTER: How necessary is the Canadian citizenship test?

'This test does very little to make immigrants better Canadians and hence should be changed or dropped,' says reader
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BarrieToday welcomes letters to the editor at news@barrietoday.com. Please include your daytime phone number and address (for verification of authorship, not publication). This letter is in response to an article, titled 'A decolonized citizenship ceremony is a step towards reconciliation,' published Aug. 8.

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I achieved Canadian citizenship some years ago. Some steps have changed over the years, but the principle has remained unaltered.

The current oath of allegiance contains more words than the older one but it has not changed in substance. What is new is the citizenship test, which has several hundred true and false questions. Many of these questions would stump the majority of Canadians. I submit this test does very little to make immigrants better Canadians and hence should be changed or dropped.

Immigrants have to hustle in the first few years to make a living, possibly learn English or French, and find their way through the many little pitfalls of living in a new country.

There is very little time to study the finer points of Canadian history or geography while trying to survive in a new culture and country. Those that have an interest will study these subjects in later years. 

It is desirable that new citizens learn the fundamentals of Canadian government and citizen’s obligation but the present citizen’s test does not achieve this as it has too many irrelevant and trick questions.

The current test just forces people to remember the answers, pass the test, and then likely forget it. So why administer it?

Konrad Brenner
Ramara

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