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13 of March 2019

EPLEI: The French Ministry of Education finally examine the development of International Schools.

In February 2019, our representative adopted a law providing for the creation of local public international educational institutions (EPLEI). These schools will provide education for students from kindergarten to baccalaureate and prepare them for the international option of the Certificate of General Education and French baccalaureate, European baccalaureate or dual course for the French baccalaureate and the certificate of access for higher education in a foreign state.

With Brexit, the French government wants to appeal to European families leaving the United Kingdom. These specific schools are a necessity for children who do not necessarily speak French as well as for expatriate families looking for a semblance of educational continuity from one country to another.

The EPLEIs were inspired by the Strasbourg European School, opened in 2015, which welcomes children whose parents work in the European institutions and those whose mother tongue is a European language other than French.

The dozen EPLEI projects envisaged would be principally developed in Paris (Courbevoie), Lille and Marseille. This creation is based on the will of local authorities (cities, departments, regions). The Minister of Education, Jean-Michel Blanquer, hopes to have at least one EPLEI by region and to implement in territories that need to strengthen their appeal.

Regarding the recruitment of students, these schools shall not be reserved to sons of diplomats or employees of international organizations. Local students will also be able to apply, if they have a foreign language level sufficient to be able to follow the classes. An amendment was adopted in committee to promote social and territorial diversity in the EPLEI. It stipulates that the regional education authorities have the mission to ensure social diversity in these schools when they decide on the assignment of students within them.

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