What is the name of your child's school? (Please report on one school per survey.)
Forest International School
In what town or city is this school located?
The western suburb in a town called Mareil Marly
How would you describe this school? (i.e. American, British, International, Local, etc.)
Truly International but they follow the english curriculum
What grade levels are represented at this school?
From nursery (2 yrs) to the end of primary
How do most children get to school everyday? (bus, train, walk, etc.)
The school organises a mini bus transfer that came straight to our house. Most come with their parents by car and the others who don't live far from the school actually cycled !
How would you describe the facilities at this school? What extra-curricular activities are available?
The school has its classrooms spread over two floors. I think it used to be a house, but the classrooms have windows that lead on to the terraces on both floors. They have an indoor heated pool, which is one of the reasons why we liked it so much (along with all the outdoor activities). They do sports twice a week but all children do activities outside throughout the year, either in the orchards (right next to the building!!) or in the nearby forest. I would call the programme rich and diverse comparing to the previous school, as my daughters would be rather tired at the end of their day. The school offers some after school activities, but you shouldn't expect a programme every day.
What has this school done to help your child transition from the curriculum in your home
country into the curriculum in your new country? Are there programs to prepare your child for repatriation?
The transition has been very smooth thanks to the caring atmosphere and the high teacher/student ratio. The international curriculum is dynamic and covers the international primary standards. They don't have a repatriation programme per se but I felt there wasn't a need to prepare my children as the academic level at Forest was high. What the school did for my girls however, was boost their self-esteem (which, looking back, is exactly what they needed to incorporate into their new school here in the UK).
How would you describe the social activities available for parents through this school? Are there parent-teacher organizations?
Forest has a parent association which organises many activities throughout the year. I didn't participate in all of the school ones as I worked, but their wine and cheese events were a lot of fun :)
What advice would you give to someone considering enrolling their child in this school?
I would ask to meet the teachers. The team is strickingly dedicated and passionate. When we first visited, one of the primary teachers (who is a male for once) showed us the experiments they had been doing that afternoon; the children (6 or 7 year-olds) has been designing their own electric circuits ! The teacher was very keen to tell us all about it, and one child explained in a lot detail how he had built his circuit board (my husband and I were rather impressed).