Launch of the book “Une enseignante en milieu carcéral : l’éducation, la clé, et la réinsertion sociale”, written by Yvette Grenier

Une enseignante en milieu carcéral : l’éducation, la clé de la réinsertion sociale

Reflection and memoirs of Ms Yvette Grenier, teacher in Continuing Education at Cégep Marie-Victorin

From left to right in the picture: Ms Josée Deschênes, Director of Continuing Education and Business Services, Ms Yvette Grenier, teacher and author, Ms Nicole Rouillier, Director General of Cégep Marie-Victorin, Mr Luc Barsalou, Master of Ceremonies

On Tuesday, June 25, 2013, a book launch was held in the atrium of the music pavilion at Cégep Marie-Victorin. Une enseignante en milieu carcéral : l’éducation, la clé de la réinsertion sociale (A Teacher in a Prison Environment: Education, The Key, And Social Reintegration), by Ms Yvette Grenier, a philosophy teacher in continuing education from 1988 to 2011 and who worked for 15 years in the prison system.

In the book, published by Laval University Press in spring 2013, Ms Yvette Grenier provides a civic and philosophical reflection on her experience as a teacher of incarcerated students.

Approximately 50 attendees, including parents and friends of the author, representatives of the Correctional Service of Canada, the UNESCO Chair in Applied Research for Education in Prison, and the director of continuing education of continuing education and business services of Cégep Marie-Victorin Ms Josée Deschênes, and the Director General of the Cégep, Ms Nicole Rouillier, all paid tribute to Ms Yvette Grenier.

Ms Deschênes has recalled that, “before becoming a teacher at Cégep Marie-Victorin, Ms Grenier also completed a continuing education program […] Having always shown and maintained an interest in education, for social inclusion and for knowledge, she returned to study at Collège Marie-Victorin, where she earned a college diploma. After earning a doctorate in philosophy in France, she returned to Collège Marie-Victorin in 1988, where she taught almost continuously until 2011 in diverse positions in the continuing education department: adult education, courses for adults 50 and up, continuing education, recognition of prior training, and prison education.”

On the occasion of her last official event as Director General of Cégep Marie-Victorin, Ms Rouillier recalled the qualities the educator and the author’s sense of involvement. Ms Rouillier also praised the reflection of Ms Grenier closed her speech with a pertinent a quote from Victor Hugo’s Les Misérables, “Open a school and you will close a prison.”

When called upon to take the stage, Ms Yvette Grenier stated that her “book will outline a choice that society has to make regarding the role of education in the social reintegration of ex-convicts. This choice is a necessary step that must become better known […] education in penitentiaries is a right for all. My commitment underlines this right.”

Ms Grenier added that “this commitment becomes effective when a significant number of inmates accept services that are available to them in order to earn a diploma or a certificate on site, within the establishment, and for other inmates to be able to pursue an education within or outside prison walls.”

In her book, Ms Grenier has “attempted to ask certain questions and to share a number of diverse personal experiences that we have to handle at any moment.” She “dares to hope that the book will reach many people who have previously felt that there were many unanswered questions on this subject that were too complex and delicate, so that they will now be able to participate in the debate and discussion.”

Luc Barsalou


Our reference centre includes a link to the editor’s website, where copies of the book can be obtained and where the first 20 pages are available, in the “Books” section.