News de Nous – 9/8/19

September 8, 2019
News de Nous Weekend Edition !
 The short holiday week, plus the storm-induced day off Tuesday nudged News de Nous to the weekend, but with no less than the usual full assortment of FASTB goodies.
 Leading the way, we welcomed a very special guest from the French government and started a new year of Music & Me and Suzuki Music. Plus, we have news from the classrooms, news about our Adult Education and DELF offerings and much more below…
FASTB Welcomes Inspectrice
Pictured from left: FASTB Founder, Elizabeth LeBihan; Inspectrice de l’Education Nationale, Sophie Beaumont; FASTB Director of Curriculum, Kamel Fekiri; and FASTB Preschool Teacher, Chérifa Fekiri
It was a great honor and pleasure to welcome a special guest to FASTB this week – traveling all the way from the French Embassy in Ottawa, Canada! Mme Sophie Beaumont, Inspectrice de l’Education Nationale for North America, spent Wednesday and Thursday at our school meeting with our teachers and observing classes (below).
With this initial visit complete, Mme Beaumont is expected to return in February and she is encouraging the school to seek accreditation this year with the French Ministry of Education because FASTB has demonstrated that we reach the Ministry’s standards in many aspects. It is certainly good news to hear that we are on the right track and we are moving forward in pursuit of accreditation this year!
He’s Back!
Music & Me, and Mr. Alex, made a triumphant return to FASTB this week with programming for all students – Preschool through Middle School. Each classroom has a specifically catered program that is age appropriate, hands on and is always focused on developing a love for music.
From singing, rhythm and dancing for the younger students to theory and songwriting for our older students, Mr. Alex has it all covered!
Éducation Française pour Adultes – Open House Tuesday
To all interested Adult French Learners – the Open House for our Adult Education program is this Tuesday evening, September 10, at 7pm at FASTB! Please note that we have updated our Adult Education web page to include additional information on our costs and the date range of our two semesters. Also, the event is on our Facebook page.
If you, or someone you know, wish to learn French as a beginner, to take your French to the next level, or to reconnect with the language you once knew so well, please email your RSVP to Dan Hannigan or on Facebook, so we can get an approximate headcount.
See you Tuesday at 7 !
Classrooms Full of Engaged Students
A brief, but productive week in our classrooms this week – students in Chérifa’s Pre-K class had lots of reasons to smile during fun activities, such as matching colors to a pattern (above), making hand prints & doing some graphic design work (& developing pre-writing skills) painting vertical lines (below). Pre-K was bursting with color this week!
In the Middle School, Emmy had a different approach to color – she came up with a fun experiment to study how plants absorb water and nutrients from the ground. Students mixed food coloring in water and added flowers – over a short period of time, they observed the early results (below)!
Meanwhile, Kamel’s K-1 students worked on the manipulation of materials, such as tangrams and play-doh (above), to replicate models – and boost vocabulary.
And Claire’s Upper Elementary group engaged in various group activities to work on thinking and speaking in French – such as the show & tell session below. Short week, but lots of activity – well done, students and teachers!
Florida Keys (& Strings)
Thank you to all who signed up for our Suzuki Music first trimester – a very nice mix of violin and piano students! Both private and group lessons got underway during the short week – plenty more details to come in the next News de Nous!
French Education Thrives in the US
Looking for something to read this weekend? 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.
Family Picnic September 25 & Other Calendar Updates
In case you missed it, we have made a couple of adjustments to our school calendar – the Family Picnic is now from 1-3pm on Wednesday, September 25, when we hope it will be cooler. We have also added and adjusted the dates of our Suzuki performances.
You can click on the image below to download the updated calendar and, as always, be sure to check the Events tab on FASTB.org periodically for more specific information on certain events. Merci !
Enroll For 2019-20 Today – Not Too Late
Even though we have started the school year, we continue to receive inquiries and it’s not too late to enroll for Pre-K through 8th grade! Please contact us so we can help you through the process as soon as possible. You can give us a call at (727) 800-2159 or email dan.hannigan@fastb.org.
Below is the sequence of events for our application process :
  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 FASTB.org and click on the Admission tab for more on the process, tuition, financial aid and more – we look forward to hearing from you!
Apply for Florida Scholarships, Grades K & Up
FASTB accepts Florida state scholarships and we are now listed as a participating school on the Step Up for Students, AAA Scholarships and McKay Scholarship websites, so if you have already applied and have been awarded a scholarship, you can opt for our school there.
Please note, too, that there is now a second income based scholarship offered by the state of Florida: the Family Empowerment Scholarship, which will also be administered by Step Up for Students. Key points for this scholarship 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 is definitely worth filling out the free online application to see if you qualify.
This brings the number of scholarships that we will accept in 2019-20 to five:
  1. Florida Tax Credit
  2. Family Empowerment
  3. McKay
  4. Gardiner
  5. Hope
It is very important that you apply ASAP if you want one of these scholarships – the way it works is that your free application is reviewed and the scholarship is awarded before you choose a school. Here are the links:
Step Up For Students (Florida Tax Credit, Family Empowerment, Gardiner, Hope Scholarships): https://www.stepupforstudents.org/for-parents/
AAA Scholarships (Florida Tax Credit, Family Empowerment, Gardiner, Hope Scholarships): https://www.aaascholarships.org/
Calling All High School French Scholars
Beginning this fall, 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 click on the photo above, or here, to view the brochure pdf. Merci !
Nouvelle Bibliothèque – Donations Accepted
If you haven’t had a chance yet, please stop by and see our beautiful new library! Over the summer, we acquired over 2,000 books that reside on our brand new shelves and we are very pleased to be able to provide both French & English books for our students to utilize in school or borrow to take home.
Even with that many books, we still have some room to add on – if you have any children’s books, in French or English, that you would like to donate, we would gladly accept them for our library. Please contact us at the school (727-800-2159) to arrange to drop them off. Thank you in advance for your help!
The Big 1-9
Our school in Maine, L’Ecole Française du Maine, has begun Year 19! To keep current on our northern outpost, you can visit EFDM’s Blog and Instagram!
Meet The Founders
The French American School of Tampa Bay, (FASTB), founded in February 2017 by Elizabeth and Willy LeBihan, offers a unique immersion school experience to students from Early Childhood through grade 12.
Inspired by their successful creation of L’Ecole Française du Maine: The French School of Maine 18 years ago, the Founders decided to put their experience and devotion for education to work in the Tampa Bay area they have grown to know and love.
2100 62nd Ave N, St. Petersburg, FL 33702
Telephone: (727) 800-2159
Dan Hannigan: School Director dan.hannigan@fastb.org
Elizabeth LeBihan: Founder and Admission Director admission@fastb.org
Willy LeBihan: Founder and Head of School director@fastb.org
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2100 62nd Ave N
St. Petersburg, FL 33702

Email: info@fastb.org
Tel: (727) 800-2159

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