Whether you’re a Francophone, a Francophile or simply want your children to have opportunities you may have missed out on, learning French is an incredible way to enhance your child’s education while setting them up to succeed later on in life.
However, encouraging a child to learn French or as a second language or maintain their bilingualism can be difficult, particularly when living in B.C. Fortunately, there are a few methods proven to support this process, including, but not limited to:
1. Speaking with your child in French outside of school or during predetermined studying hours.
2. Find French entertainment your child genuinely enjoys, including books, movies, and video games.
3. Studying with them and learning new things together en Français.
4. Introduce them to other French speakers to demonstrate that being bilingual connects them to a larger community.
5. Move away from spelling and grammar and focus on making French fun, whether that be through jokes, songs, or games.
While these techniques will help your child succeed, it’s still a difficult process to maintain, even for parents in French-speaking homes. Fortunately, schools like École des Navigateurs work with families to help kids succeed in language and beyond through an inclusive and caring public education program designed to promote vibrant Francophone culture while equipping students with the essential life skills needed to thrive in today’s world.
Located in Richmond, B.C., École des Navigateurs is a Francophone school that operates as part of the Conseil scolaire francophone de la Colombie-Britannique (CSF), also known as School District 93. Founded in 1995, the CSF provides free high-quality Kindergarten to Grade 12 public education in an entirely French-speaking environment to over 6,000 students in 47 schools across British Columbia.
Working primarily with Francophone families, and families with one French-speaking parent, CSF schools don’t teach French as a second language. Instead, they teach every subject in French, an important distinction from traditional French Immersion programs.
This approach ensures your child receives the highest quality language education possible as they participate in a one-of-a-kind school program tailored to help students reach their full potential by acquiring the knowledge, skills, and attitudes required to contribute to a healthy, democratic, pluralistic, and multicultural society.
Of course, the CSF goes beyond just the language. Students love the wide variety of annual projects, events, field trips, and hands-on workshops offered throughout the school year.
These include collaborations with local partners who provide fun activities in areas such as environmental studies, Indigenous education, robotics, literature, art, and sports. In fact, the CSF’s Jules Verne school soccer team won the provincial championship last year, the first provincial win for a public and Francophone school in British Columbia.
The school is also known as a stepping-stone into Vancouver’s highly competitive International Baccalaureate (IB) programs.
Studying at the CSF also allows parents to become part of a close-knit community while encouraging their children to develop in a safe, innovative, and inclusive environment. The school offers personalized services for each student and family, including free transportation and English as a first (or second) language courses.
By making French synonymous with these experiences, the school is able to inspire students to cherish their bilingualism, taking the burden off parents who are hopeful their child will have the life skills necessary to succeed in the world later on in life.
The Conseil scolaire francophone de la Colombie-Britannique believes language is more than just a skill; it's an opportunity to engage in culture, succeed in your career, and be capable of taking on the maximum amount of opportunities in our increasingly connected world. As such, the school's success plan emphasizes social responsibility, guiding students' actions to establish an environment where everyone feels respected, accepted, and safe, regardless of their background or language ability.
The CSF is accepting new students now. To learn more about admissions and student eligibility, or to enrol or register your child in a French public school today, visit frenchlanguageschoolsbritishcolumbia.ca.
N’attendez plus! Inscrivez votre enfant dans une des écoles du CSF dès maintenant !