Edouard Courtial: Ministerial Visit at the New French Bilingual School

The CFBL ( Collège Français Bilingue de Londres ») received on 6 March its first ministerial visit, as Edouard Courtial, the secretary of State for French nationals abroad, came to see the latest French school to open in London, in Kentish Town. Alongside the ambassador Bernard Emié, the general consul Edouard Braine, the school headmaster François-Xavier Gabet, as well as businessman d’Arnaud Vaissié, who masterminded the school’s fundraising, he paid homage to the beautiful new school, not forgetting to mention its canteen- apparently the best one in London…

A few facts…

The CFBL is the first new school which has opened since the « school project » was launched by the French embassy in 2008, with the aim to find solutions in order to fulfil the needs of the French community in London, which has grown by 70% in the past ten years to reach 350,000 permanent residents.The school is a Grade II listed building. It was built in 1874 by the architect Edward Robert Robson, who also drew the plans for Cheltenham Ladies College.

Unusually for a French school abroad, it was funded by both the French government and private sector, mainly thanks to a group of London-based French businessmen through a non profit organisation they set up to raise funds to finance the new school. Teaching at the CFBL differs from other French schools abroad as it offers a French curriculum but taught in both French and English. In the primary section, the lessons are equally divided between the two languages, while in the secondary section, sport, arts, music are taught in English, with the option to study English culture and literature.


Photos courtesy of the French Embassy in London

Photos courtesy of the French Embassy in London