French Immersion F.A.Q.

What is French Immersion?

French Immersion is the most effective way for a child to acquire a second language in BC. Students acquire French language skills by being taught the BC curriculum standards  in French. From a young age, students are immersed in French through their teacher and outside resources, allowing them to listen, experience, write and practice in French daily. Developing competency in French means being able to use the language to acquire, extend, and refine knowledge; and to use language in meaningful ways.

As a parent or guardian, do I need to speak French?

French Immersion is a French second language program that is designed for children whose first language is not French. It is not necessary for guardians or parents to speak French. The best way to help your child is be enthusiastic and supportive by:

– Invite them to read to you in French
– Listen to French music together
– Watch French television or films together
– Take advantage of French cultural events
– Provide French aids such as a French/English dictionary at home or from the library
– Ask them to explain their work in French then translate

Are there benefits to learning a second language?

Immersion students not only learn a second language, but they learn how to learn as well. Immersion students become good listeners. They learn not only to use words, but expression, intonation, body movements, context and gestures to understand what is happening in the classroom. Immersion students learn to control two language systems and sharpen their language awareness.  Certain studies also show that children in French Immersion excel in all other areas such as math and science in comparison to their counterparts.  And finally, students may be more eligible for  job opportunities in the future that may require bilingualism. 

Will French Immersion graduates be given certificates in both English and French?

French Immersion students can earn both a British Columbia Certificate of Graduation (Dogwood Diploma) and a Diplôme de fin d’études secondaires en Colombie-Britannique. Students will earn both if they meet the graduation requirements as set out in the Graduation Program Order. Requirements include Français langue seconde – immersion 10, Français langue seconde – immersion 11, Français langue seconde – immersion 12, including the required provincial exam. French Immersion students who earn a Diplôme de fin d’études secondaires en Colombie-Britannique receive a French Immersion program designation on their transcripts and are certified as bilingual.


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