News de Nous – 3/26/21

March 26, 2021
Operation Incubation
 At least 6 potential ducklings reside in eggs in a very warm and well protected portion of our playground, under the watchful eyes of our age 3 & up humans – pretty smart mama duck! Barring any fowl play, we are a little less than 2 weeks away from a potential duckling parade – stay tuned!
 Meanwhile, we have big FASTB news to report in this week’s News de Nous:
  1. International Baccalaureate (IB) accepts FASTB as “Candidate School” in the Primary Years Programme (PYP)
  2. The Association of French Schools in North America (AFSA) accepts FASTB as its 51st member
  3. French school in Mali to benefit from FASTB community-wide effort
 Lots of details on these stories, plus our Admissions news focuses on the benefits of multilingualism and Camp FASTB is open for enrollment for this summer – enjoy!
FASTB Embarks on IB/PYP Journey
The French American School of Tampa Bay is honored to announce that we are now a Candidate School for the Primary Years Program (PYP), officially pursuing authorization as an International Baccalaureate (IB) World School. IB World Schools share a common philosophy – a commitment to high quality, challenging, international education that FASTB believes is important for our students and aligns very well with our mission. Please click on the video below to hear from teachers and students about the impact of the PYP program.
PYP learners: Take ownership of their learning
Not every school that wishes to be an IB school is accepted. FASTB underwent a challenging application process, spearheaded by our founders, Elizabeth & Willy LeBihan, that resulted in our Candidate School status. It is a great initial step in a process that could take up to five years for full accreditation, however, beginning this fall, we will incorporate the program into our curriculum, both in English and in French, and start building toward full authorization.
For further information about the IB and its programmes, visit
Project Mali: Helping a School in Need
Olivier’s elementary class is leading a school-wide effort to assist l’École des Sables in Taboye, Mali and develop a long distance relationship between our schools. The details of this project, including key dates, can be downloaded here.
As you will note, Mali is a highly impoverished country and education for these students represents a life-altering opportunity. With the voluntary help of our families and Parent Association, this initial project will provide school supplies for the school’s 82 students – which will be a great help in supporting the mission of l’École des Sables.
Bravo to Olivier for this initiative and thank you all for your participation !
FASTB Admissions – No Prior French Needed for Ages 3-6
This continues to be a very busy and exciting time of year in the admissions world. As we look ahead to 2021-22, we do have some slots available so please contact us ASAP to set up a virtual tour.
Rising Preschool and Kindergarten students can enter our immersion environment with no previous instruction in French. These years are foundational for language development and students at this age are particularly suited to thrive in this environment.
Last time, we shared an article on why it’s great to start learning a language at a young age – this time, check out this article on the cognitive benefits of multilingualism.
At FASTB, Kindergarten students are not only at a great age to learn a second language, they have the added bonus of being eligible for Florida scholarships (must be 5 on September 1), which we offer to students K & up. Step Up for Students is now accepting applications from all families – please visit their site to learn more and apply.
Private Virtual Tours
You hear things about language immersion, but what does it actually look like? Well, the best way to see what we do first-hand is to schedule a private virtual tour, which will take you inside our dynamic and safe classrooms to see where it all happens.
Our Director of Admissions, Audrey Talarico, is regularly conducting these tours, offering you a live look at our school in action – see and hear what French immersion is all about, observe the structure and content of lessons, view our welcoming environment and student artwork and tour the rest of the school and playground as well. You will see what makes our school unique in this region, so please contact Audrey to schedule a virtual tour.
You can also feel free to visit our Admissions page and website to further explore what we have to offer, and learn about our admissions process.
We look forward to hearing from you soon – merci !
FASTB En Classe – That’s What We’re Talking (and Singing) About
Immersion in practice – our Preschool gathering time with Cécile and Pauline presents many opportunities for our students to speak, sing and build vocabulary. These sessions, plus all-French small group, one on one, play and meal time throughout the day achieve great gains – some who started in August, with no prior French, are already conversing!
Below see students sing, engage in some Q&A and count out the day’s attendance.
FASTB En Classe - Preschool Sings, Builds Vocabulary
FASTB En Classe - Count 'em up
Bike Shop
Recently in Olivier’s class, students were treated to a full mechanical breakdown of their teacher’s bicycle as part of their science curriculum. The bike was reduced to its smallest parts as Olivier and students took it apart, piece by piece (pretty brave move using his own bicycle!).
Each part has a purpose and students learned all of their names and functions. Additionally, students learned how to fix a tire – removing the tube, locating the leak (below) and patching the hole. A great interactive lesson overall and, yes, Olivier’s bicycle has been reassembled and is in good working order!
Profile of a 19th Century African American Artist
You may recall discussion of our elementary class’ Black History Month presentations in our last newsletter – the biography below focuses on artist Henry Tanner, who spent some of his formative artistic years in France.
FASTB En Classe - Black History Month Presentation
On Saturday, March 20, Isabelle David, Head of the French American School of Chicago, announced the The French American School of Tampa Bay has been unanimously accepted as the 51st member of AFSA, Association of French Schools in North America.
All AFSA schools are accredited by the French Ministry of Education and the association’s goals include:
  • Professional support
  • The exchange of practices and ideas
  • Training and development for heads of school
  • Acquiring and publishing educational, administrative and legal information relevant to best management and governance practices
Our sister school, L’École Française du Maine, has been a member for many years and Head of School Willy LeBihan is an active participant in conferences and on committees. This is a key affiliation for FASTB, along with AEFE (see video below) and MLF – benefitting our students and staff, and solidifying our standing within the large network of outstanding French schools.
2021-22 Calendar is Here!
We have our school calendar for 2021-22 available on our website. You will find start dates, holidays and more – just click on the image above and you can download the calendar.
Camp FASTB Returns!
If you’re looking for a safe place for you kids to enjoy the summer, please join us at Camp FASTB Bilingual Summer Camp and Childcare! Mornings will include a fun French activities and afternoons will be filled with arts & crafts, games and plenty of time for free play. The Early Childhood group will have time for rest in the afternoon.
Camp FASTB is open to ages 3-12 with full and half day options, during the weeks of June 21, June 28, July 5, July 12, July 19, July 26 and August 2. Please visit our Camp FASTB page for more details and to submit your enrollment. Merci !!
AEFE: témoignages d’anciens élèves
Les élèves, anciens élèves, personnels et parents d’élèves du réseau AEFE ont la parole ! À travers leurs expériences et leurs regards, des témoins partagent ce que sont pour eux les forces du réseau AEFE, fort de 540 établissements dans 138 pays et rassemblant plus de 365 000 élèves, et les atouts du système éducatif français, qui participent au rayonnement de la France à l’étranger.
L'enseignement français à l'étranger : leurs témoignages
Students, alumni, staff, and parents of students of the AEFE network have their say! Through their experiences and views, witnesses share the AEFE network’s strengths, with 540 schools in 138 countries and more than 365,000 students. The French education system’s assets, which contribute to France’s influence abroad, are for them. Video 2 below has English subtitles.
L'enseignement français à l'étranger : leurs témoignages, sous-titres en anglais
2100 62nd Ave N, St. Petersburg, FL 33702
Telephone: (727) 800-2159
Dan Hannigan: School Director
Audrey Talarico: Director of Admissions
Elizabeth LeBihan: Founder and CFO
Willy LeBihan: Founder and Head of School
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