Two more visitors from France arrived at Anglophone West School District on Oct. 30 to learn about French second language programs, opportunities for student and teacher exchanges, as well as resources and support for newcomer students in district schools.
Laurent Bertat and Patricia Gave de Butler, both academic delegates for European, international relations and cooperation, spoke with Amanda Deveaux, subject coordinator for French second language programs, and Joanne Williams, subject coordinator for English as an additional language (EAL) and international students.
Bertat and Gave de Butler were taking part in a study tour for Projet académique, aimed at guiding schools in France to create an international structure to support students and teachers interested in building partnerships with schools in other countries.
They were accompanied by Théo Barrère from the Office of the Consulate General for France in Atlantic Canada, and Julie Forest, international education officer with the Department of Education and Early Childhood Development.
“We are here to develop cooperative links in education both through language and partnerships," said Bertat. "Immersion programs are very interesting to us. There is an excellent opportunity for us here (in NB) to build partnerships. One of our interests is to send our teachers on exchanges to learn English."
"It is very important to our ministry to learn languages," added Gave de Butler. "We could host some our your teachers (in France) if they are interested."
Deveaux outlined the delivery of the various French second language programs available in district schools, noting that 40-45 per cent of students in the district are enrolled in French Immersion. She said the district works to make sure teachers are as well equipped as possible to deliver French Second Language programs, especially new teachers who are in the classroom for the first time.
"Our ultimate goal is to provide good instruction and deliver a good education to our students," Deveaux explained, noting learning a second language opens doors to opportunities for employment and cultural enrichment for students in the future.
Williams spoke about the 600 newcomer students who are enrolled in district schools and the tutoring and resources available to them to assist with the cultural transition and language development. She noted many newcomer students continue their education through to graduation and often stay and study in the province at the post secondary level. Williams also highlighted the various exchanges which take place with other countries for teachers and students. Usually, for students, it is for a semester or school year in high school, she said.
French Immersion students in the province also have the opportunity to take part in learning exchanges in the Province of Quebec.
Shown in the photo below are (back row) Joanne Williams, Julie Forest. Front row: Théo Barrère, Laurent Bertat, Patricia Gave de Butler and Amanda Deveaux.