Wednesday, July 4, 2012

School's out; what's next for the kids?

Yesterday was the last day of school. This is a milestone we did not want to reach because it means the end of our Parisian adventure. But it's also a major achievement because all three kids did absolutely great this year—in every possible way. Their third trimester grades were great, but beyond grades we can see they've thrived and learned and grown so much that we can call this crazy adventure a success. The school also exceeded our expectations and we feel lucky to have been able to be a part of their 2011-2012 immersion program.

The kids are, of course, happy that school is over, but they're also a bit sad because they know what it means, and after making so many great friendships and sharing so much this year with all the other kids, they wouldn't mind staying longer.

We wouldn't mind staying longer either.

So what's next for them? When we decided to move to Paris last year everyone told us how great it was that the kids would learn another language. While that's true, learning a third language was never our main goal; it's always been more important to us that they master Spanish, our family's native language, which is one of the reasons why we're moving to Colombia. But of course, once they started learning French, we realized it would be wonderful if they could keep it up.

And now they'll get to do both.

When we were thinking of moving to Colombia after our year here was over, we applied for admission to the Lycée Français of Bogotá. We didn't know how much of a chance we'd have since at that time the kids had been barely five months in their French school. But based on the school they're attending, their first trimester report cards, and the glowing recommendation from the headmistress, the Lycée accepted them right away and have so far made us feel very welcome.

The Lycée is just a few streets away from where I grew up in Bogotá. It was founded in 1934 by a few Colombians returning from France who were attracted to the French culture and wanted to provide a French education to their children. The school is accredited and partially funded by the French government through AEFE (Agency for French Education Abroad), a unique network of schools in 130 countries that was created to help promote the French language and culture.

We're happy and proud the kids will be going there. And as my good friend Richard said, we get to remain in la Francophonie.


  1. Gonzalo y dianny, que maravilla de experiencia fue todo esto. Que pesar que se fue tan rapido, pero lo que les queda a los ninos es increible y mas con tu blog tan completo. Les deseo mucha suerte en Colombia.

  2. How gratifying, that you can remain part of Francophonie. Their memories of the year will last longer with this followup, and you already know how a lycee works--a portable part of Paris, to help you while you all adjust again to Colombia. Some adventure! Some success! Bons voyages!!