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Immigrant children grow up to outperform other Canadians


Mohanad Moetaz - 07 April, 2021

Immigrant children grow up to outperform other Canadians
Immigrant children grow up to outperform other Canadians

Children of immigrants who immigrated to Canada before the age of 15 had the highest rate of post-secondary enrollment and annual salaries.

This is according to a Statistics Canada study that analysed data from tax files in 2018. The focus was on immigrants who arrived in Canada before the age of 15.

A whopping 70 per cent of these immigrants are in a post-secondary institution by the age of 20. To compare, this number is 56 per cent for the overall population. Women who immigrated to Canada before the age of 15 make up most of these 20 year olds pursuing a post-secondary education.

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25-year olds had an average annual salary of about $29,700 in 2018. Those who immigrated as children were making an average of $30,300 per year.

For 30-year olds, the average annual salary was $41,800. To compare, 30-year olds who immigrated to Canada as children made an average of $47,400 per year.

This means that immigrant children grew up to have a salary that is 13 per cent higher than the overall population.

Average salary correlates with immigration class

Immigrants in Canada can be divided into three immigration classes:

Economic class immigrants make up the majority of immigrants. They come to Canada through various pathways, most notably the Express Entry programs and Provincial Nominee Programs.

Family class immigrants are those who were sponsored by a Canadian spouse, parent, or other family member to come to Canada.

Refugee class immigrants are those who seek asylum in Canada.

Children of economic class immigrants had the highest rate of post-secondary enrollment and annual salaries when compared with children of family class and refugee class immigrants.

From age 24 onwards, the wages of economic-class children surpasses the overall population. 

Before the age of 24, family class and refugee class children earned more than economic-class children. This may be because they were more likely to be working at this time, rather than attending an educational institution.

By the time economic-class children were 30, they had an average wage of $52,400, in 2018, compared with the average of the overall population, $41,800. Children of refugee families were making an average of $41,600, and children of family class immigrants were making $40,100.

The reason there is a disparity between the different immigration classes is largely due to how these immigrants are admitted to Canada.

Economic-class immigrants are accepted to come to Canada based on their ability to integrate into the Canadian labour market. They are often assessed, based on their age, education, work experience, language abilities and whether they have a job offer in Canada. Children of these immigrants are likely to follow in their parents' footsteps.

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