French-American School of New York, Mamaroneck
Private PreK-12 school with 850 students and class sizes of 17-20; tuition is $23,000-$26,900.
While more than half of the students at this school start out as non-French speakers, they don’t stay that way for long, says Joël Peinado, head of school. Students get immersed in French when they start in preschool, and, by the time they hit kindergarten, classes are taught in both French and English. “After preschool, kids have to speak French,” he adds.
The school does offer a dual degree from New York State and the option to take the French National Baccalaureate exam. Though nearly half of the school’s students are native French speakers, the school boasts students of 50 different nationalities. Teachers, too, come from around the globe, and the studies focus not just on language and culture, but also on the different ways of thinking, Peinado says. Students write essays using deductive reasoning, the way most French do, and also tackle assignments using inductive reasoning, which is more popular in American schools.
The school recently bought a defunct golf course in White Plains, and will be moving its middle school and high school to the new location in September, 2015. The preschool and elementary school will move later.
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