Attractiveness: stronger international education provision in Paris region
Educational provision is a major factor in France’s attractiveness, in addition to the economic and financial measures that have been implemented over the past few months. As part of the plan presented by the Prime Minister in July 2017 to strengthen Paris’ attractiveness as a financial centre, the Vice-President of the Île-de-France Region at the Île-de-France Regional Council and the Chief Education Officer of the Versailles Local Education Authority were tasked with reflecting on the development of international education provision in the Île-de-France Region.
The Prime Minister and the President of the Île-de-France Region decided to include all the proposals in their report, submitted on 22 January 2018, in order to develop language teaching provision and meet the expectations of families wishing to settle in France.
A PERSONALISED WELCOME AND EXTRA SCHOOL PLACES FROM THE START OF THE 2018 ACADEMIC YEAR
For the start of the 2018 academic year, international education provision could reach 1,000 available places in primary and secondary schools and sixth-form colleges, including both state-run and private schools. The development of this provision will be based on existing international hubs in the Île-de-France region and on the opening of the international secondary school in Courbevoie at the start of the next academic year. Three new international secondary schools will also be created by the beginning of the 2021 academic year. Investment will be specifically dedicated to teacher training and recruiting native speakers.
At the start of the next academic year, a personalised welcome will be offered to families settling in France. In order to make the process easier for families, they will have access to:
- a single telephone number;
- an interactive guide;
- a mapping tool presenting the overall educational provision.
Strengthening international education provision will also be based on changes in the teaching that is available:
- trialling of bilingual teaching with equal hours for each language, from nursery school through to sixth-form college;
- recruitment of native-speaker teachers.
Finally, an "international school" certification policy will be put in place to enhance the visibility and international openness of schools and educational establishments in the Île-de-France region. The report stresses that language certification at the end of the 2nd cycle (completion of upper secondary school), as a tool for recognising the level of language proficiency, should be offered as standard in the curricula of international education establishments. Using official bodies in the target countries will ensure its legitimacy internationally.