News de Nous – 1/30/20

January 30, 2020
100 Days… And Beyond !
 A whirlwind week at FASTB World Headquarters as our school celebrated our 100th day of the school year Monday, followed quickly by our Chinese New Year guest speaker on Tuesday and yesterday’s dramatic performance of “Scoubidoo” by our Elementary class – News de Nous has blanket coverage below.
 Plus, a super article about FASTB in le Courrier de Floride’s February edition, our Open House et Soirée is 5 days away, Camp FASTB’s return is 5 months away, there are vegetable sightings in the FASTB garden, and much more below – commence scrolling.
Centième jour d’école
100 – it’s a big number, and warrants a big day of celebration, so all classes were all-in. Elaborate classroom entrances and 100-block towers (below) set the tone for the day that would be filled with lots of counting…
…meanwhile, aboard ship, Captain Olivier issued a challenge to his crew – scour the land for treasure and bring back 100 beads (below – by the way, it’s worth pointing out that not many Pedagogical Coordinators can pull off the pirate look like Olivier can).
Music & dance followed in the lobby to cap a fun-filled morning – thank you to all of our teachers for making it a great start to our week!
100th Day Bonus: Sing-a-long with Michelle
Monday we also welcomed Michelle Roderick, the aunt of parent Tara Deubel, to sing fun songs with our students in both French and English. Michelle was a teacher for many years and continues to sing to students in French schools in Massachusetts. She stopped into each classroom and was great with our students, who joined right in – merci, Michelle !
Pièce de théâtre : Scoubidoo
Olivier’s Elementary class did a fabulous job yesterday with their performance of “Scoubidoo”. The story of a cat in search of her parents, who seeks assistance from her humorous, but not overly helpful “grandfather”, Scoubidoo was performed by our students entirely in French, with costumes and the set created by the students as well, and excellent make-up artistry provided by Emmy – you can see an excerpt from the performance by clicking on the video below. The memorization of lines, the acting and the enthusiasm of everyone involved is a testament to the effort Olivier and his class put into this project – bravo !
Scoubidoo !
FASTB Featured – Le Courrier de Floride de Février
The February edition of Le Courrier de Floride is online and soon to be in our lobby in hard copy – check it out because FASTB is featured on page 4. Founder Gwendal Gauthier recently interviewed FASTB Head of School, Willy LeBihan, and teachers Olivier & Magali Guilhem, about the progression of our school in year two, as well as the evolution of French education and how it works in our immersion environment.
Click on the photos to access the February online version – for those who lean l’anglais, you can view the English translation here.
Thank you to Le Courrier de Floride for this wonderful article !
Open House et Soirée Next Tuesday 6-8pm
We hope you can join us for our FASTB Open House & Soirée next Tuesday, February 4 at 6pm. You will have opportunities to tour the school, meet teachers and ask plenty of questions – please also feel free to spread the word.
Enjoy live music, plus wine & cheese and other tasty items.
Please RSVP to or on our Facebook Event page so we can have a headcount for planning. Merci – à mardi !
Tour de FASTB
This is a busy time of year in the admission department – for our current families, we are in our priority enrollment period through February 7, plus we have welcomed many visitors to tour our school over the last several weeks in the hopes that they will join our growing FASTB family! If you or someone you know would like to learn more about our school and campus, please feel free to contact us to schedule a private tour or plan to come to our February 4th Open House. You can give us a call at (727) 800-2159 or email
Below is the sequence of steps to apply and enroll at FASTB:
  1. Inquiry: Submit the Application Inquiry Form on our web site and we will contact you to set up a school visit to give you more information about FASTB and answer questions
  2. Apply: Click here for our online Enrollment Application which offers the convenience of applying and paying the fee entirely online
  3. Interview: After receiving the completed application we set up a parent or guardian and child interview to assess readiness and ability to benefit from our program
  4. Acceptance & Enrollment: Upon acceptance, an Enrollment Contract must be signed and deposit paid to secure a spot for the upcoming year
Please visit and click on the Admission tab for more on the process, tuition, financial aid and more – we look forward to hearing from you!
2020 Florida Scholarships – Renewal Enrollment Open Now
For those currently enrolled in Florida income-based scholarship programs, you can begin the renewal process NOW by going to the Step Up for Students or AAA Scholarship websites (see the links below). For new income-based scholarship applicants, you can sign up here to be notifiedonce the enrollment period begins.
FASTB accepts Florida state scholarships and we are a participating school on the Step Up for Students, AAA Scholarships, Family Empowerment andMcKay Scholarship websites, so when you apply and you are awarded a scholarship, you can opt for our school there.
Please note that there are two income based scholarship offered by the state of Florida: the Florida Tax Credit Scholarship and the Family Empowerment Scholarship, which was created just last year. Key points for the FES are:
  1. For students currently in public schools OR students entering Kindergarten
  2. Income thresholds are higher than those in the Florida Tax Credit Scholarship
If you meet the criteria in the first item above, it will definitely be worth filling out the free online FES application to see if you qualify.
The total number of scholarship programs that we will accept in 2019-20 and 2020-21 is five:
  1. Florida Tax Credit
  2. Family Empowerment
  3. McKay
  4. Gardiner
  5. Hope
Here are the links:
Step Up For Students (Florida Tax Credit, Gardiner, Hope Scholarships):
AAA Scholarships (Florida Tax Credit, Gardiner, Hope Scholarships):
FASTB Garden Party Has Begun
Braving the seasonal temperatures, our Preschool and Kindergarten classes broke ground on le jardin de FASTB this week, planting lettuce, tomato, and peppers. With some assistance, holes were dug and the plants were carefully set in place and gently watered to get us started. More will be added to the other beds, but a great start by our young green thumbs!
Chinese New Year: l’année du rat
Tuesday’s Chinese New Year event was a big success. Once again this year, we were joined by Dr. Linda Carroll, a former USF Chinese language professor and current instructor at the Tampa Bay Chinese School, who spoke with all of our students about the lunar new year, explained that this year is the Year of the Rat and informed students about what the symbol was for their years of birth.
The primary activity was to make cute little rat greeting cards with some paper, scissors, glue and a little creativity. Results were great plus Dr. Carroll brought some traditional Chinese clothing for students to try on – merci, Dr. Carroll !
Camp FASTB Is Back – Enrollment Is Open
Camp FASTB Year 2 is on the horizon and you can enroll your child today by visiting the camp page on our website. Our French Immersion camp is open to children ages 5 to 12 (must turn 5 as of Sept 1, 2020) and will begin the week of July 6, and run 4 consecutive weeks to the end of the month – you can sign up for 1, 2 , 3 or 4 weeks and we have both full & half day options. Please contact us at (727) 800-2159 if you have any questions – Merci !
FASTB Interns Arrive In February
The French American School of Tampa Bay (FASTB) is an official partner of the Teacher Training Institute (INSPE: Institut National Supérieur du Professorat et de l’Education) at the Université de Bourgogne in Dijon, France.
This coming semester, we are delighted to welcome two French graduate students, who are pursuing Master’s Degrees in Elementary Education. This “stage” Practicum is an essential first step in completing the Master MEEF 1er degré – to become a certified teacher for the French Ministry of Education (Professeur des écoles). Olivier Guilhem, Pedagogical Coordinator at FASTB, and Pascale Crispin, Professor at the Université de Bourgogne, will supervise these internships.
Let’s meet the Interns:
Emilie Bonneau, 22, comes from a small village, Pougues-les-Eaux, in the Nièvre region of Central France. She is studying to become a primary school teacher at the Université de Bourgogne. She loves pets and spending time with her family, enjoys cooking & shopping, and is a big fan of Harry Potter & Disney movies!
Alice Meiner
Emilie Bonneau
Alice Meiner, 21, has a Bachelor’s Degree in Education and is currently pursuing her Master’s Degree to become a certified teacher for the French Ministry of Education. Alice grew up in Nevers, in the Nièvre Region of Central France and, like Emilie, is a Harry Potter & Disney fan. She also enjoys reading, animals, discovering new things and traveling, as well as spending time with friends and family.
Please join us in welcoming Emilie and Alice to FASTB and the USA next month!
2020-21 FASTB Calendar Ready to Download
2020-21 Calendar
2019-20 Calendar
Our FASTB calendar for the 2020-21 school year has been released – you can click on the calendar image on the left above to find out when school starts and ends, and everything else in between. For those living in the present, the 2019-20 calendar is still available and you can click on the image on the right for that. Our Events page is also a good source of what’s up in FASTB land.
Café et Conversation Every Thursday
Great to see parents coming to our Café et Conversation sessions! Each week, a different topic is discussed, involving a teacher, administrator or another program leader. These informal meetups go from 8:30-9:00 every Thursday morning – the upcoming schedule includes:
  • Feb 6: Parent-Student Handbook – Willy
  • Feb 13: Suzuki Music – Jenny
  • Feb 20: Elementary Class – Olivier
  • Feb 27: Preschool Class – Erika
  • Mar 5: Music & Me – Mr. Alex
All parents are welcome to attend these sessions, which provide an opportunity to discuss the topic of the week in a relaxed environment – over coffee, of course.
DELF For Advanced High School French Students
We are offering after school advanced French classes for high school students, who wish to pursue a greater proficiency in the language. The Diplôme d’Etudes de Langue Française (DELF) is a certification of French language abilities for non-native speakers, administered by the International Centre for French Studies for the French Ministry of Education.
The program includes six different units (A1, A2, B1, B2, C1, C2), with each leading to an exam and, if passed, a French diploma. The last levels of the program can give access to French universities without having to take another proficiency test before enrolling. US colleges also recognize the value of these diplomas and they are also be very valuable professionally as proof of fluency in French.
If you or someone you know might be interested in this program, please contact the school. You can visit our DELF page for more information or click here to view the brochure pdf. Merci !
Book Smart? Volunteers Needed to Organize Library
Thank you to all who have donated this year. We recently received several boxes of French children’s and adult books from a generous donors, Sally Maier and Vanessa Bevington – ! Donations of French or English children’s books are always welcomed, and very much appreciated.
We would love to have some volunteers come in to help organize our library – if you are interested, please contact the school at (727) 800-2159. Merci !
French Education Thrives In The US
Click the image above and check out a terrific article in France-Amérique about the success of French schools in the US. If you’re especially ambitious, there is also a link within the story to another fascinating article by Fabrice Jaumont about the benefits and relevance of being bilingual. Many of the points in these articles reinforce the foundation of our mission here at FASTB.
Passe une bonne semaine !
2100 62nd Ave N, St. Petersburg, FL 33702
Telephone: (727) 800-2159
Dan Hannigan: School Director
Elizabeth LeBihan: Founder and Admission Director
Willy LeBihan: Founder and Head of School
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