All students have the right to belong to a student association, to take part in setting it up, and to participate in its activities and administration.
The main purpose of an association is to represent students at a college or university and to promote their common interests concerning various activities, particularly those relating to teaching, services and the administration of their educational institution.
Once an association receives accreditation:
- It is recognized by the authorities as the only organization representing the students.
- It can state the institution’s obligations with regard to the association (the institution must provide the association with a room, bulletin boards, list of students.
- It alone can appoint, alone, students to sit on the institution’s council and other committees.
- It can finance its activities because membership fees become compulsory for every person registered at the institution and represented by the association.
To be accredited, associations must meet two conditions:
- be constituted under Part III of the Companies Act
- have obtained a majority of votes cast in a secret ballot, provided that the majority comprises at least 25% of the students who are registered at the institution concerned and affected by the accreditation
To obtain accreditation, the association must, at least 15 days before the scheduled opening of the poll, send a notice to the accreditation agent at the Ministère de l’Éducation et de l’Enseignement supérieur indicating the place, schedule, date(s) of the poll and the group of students concerned. Following receipt of this notice, the accreditation agent will work with the association to set the polling procedure.
Accreditation polls must take place between September 15 and November 15 or between January 15 and March 15. If the results are in favour of the association, it has until December 1 or April 1, depending on the period in which the poll was held, to submit a written application for accreditation. The accreditation agent must give his or her decision within 30 days following either December 1 or April 1, whichever is applicable.
If the association wants to appeal the accreditation agent’s decision, it must do so, within 45 days of that decision, by writing to the Comité d’accréditation des associations d’étudiants, through the Deputy Minister’s office.
For further information, please contact the person responsible for student services at your college or university.