The French Immersion Program begins in grade 4 and continues through grade 12 graduation with a Bilingual Dogwood Certificate.
The Grade 4 Entry French Immersion is a program that can offer your child:
- A fun, effective and challenging way to learn French.
- The opportunity to learn the same BC Ministry of Education curriculum as the regular English program, in French.
- An opportunity to participate in rich French cultural learning experiences.
- A bilingual future.
The grade 4 Entry French Immersion Program is intended for non-French speaking students who wish to develop a high level of proficiency in both official languages. Students enrolled in French immersion study the same BC curriculum as students in the English language program. The major distinction between the English language program and French Immersion is that the language of instruction and communication in the immersion component is French. Students and teachers are able to use English when necessary, responding to the needs of students. Report cards are written in English and use the same reporting format used in the English program.
French Immersion students have identical opportunities to take part in all school and district programs and to access student support services such as counselors, learning services and speech and language pathologists. Specific opportunities are also provided for cultural and French language development such as Concours (Public Speaking), Theatre, Carnival, visiting French authors, etc. Students in French Immersion have access to French and English resources in their classrooms, in the Library and online.
Students that graduate from the program in grade 12 will have the language skills to participate in French conversation, take post-secondary courses with French as the language of instruction, and accept employment with French as the language of work.
Time Allocations for French Immersion instruction in French and English are approximately as follows:
- Grade 4 to Grade 7 – 75%-80% instruction in French and 20%-25% instruction in English Language Arts.
- Grades 8 and 9 – Français langue seconde - immersion 8 and 9, and two other academic courses. There may be some elective courses instructed in French.
- Grades 10 to Grade 12 – Français langue seconde - immersion 10 – 12, and three electives. One of the electives must be completed at Grade 11 or 12 level.
Grade 4 – 7 Late French Immersion Expectations
By the end of Grade 4 children are able to express orally, in French, their basic needs and describe some of what they are doing. Reading and writing skills in French are developing and English language skills continue to grow. Late French Immersion students will need to spend much time developing their understanding of the French language and increasing their vocabulary.
By the end of Grade 5, children are able to express themselves more fluently in French though English words may be heard in a sentence where the French word isn't known. Children will have mastered the basics of reading and be able to express simple ideas in written form.In Grade 6 and 7, children are more comfortable in speaking, listening, reading and writing in French. Children will have the basic communication skills to enable them to function in French. Throughout the rest of the years, greater fluency is achieved in their oral and written French language development.
Changing Language Programs
Grade four is the entry level for French Immersion. It is hoped that students and parents entering into the program view it as a long term commitment. Occasionally students and parents wish to return to the English program. As with every educational placement, this process with take place through consultation with the parents, teacher and principal.
Registration for grade 4 Entry French Immersion
Parents of grade 3 students will be notified in February of each year and are requested to sign their child up for French Immersion at your child's current school office, or deliver the registration form to school.