Our highschool is located in Aix-en-Provence, in the south-east of France. the buildings of our school stand right on the spot where a Roman theater used to be : it was excavated in 2004 but due to lack of funds it has been partielly buried in sand again. So, in our schoolyard, we can see this great hole, but nothing more !
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Madame Allegre et Madame Roig
The buildings of the school itself are a former convent called Notre Dame de la Seds. It was built in the 17th century and it is considered a historical buildings. Many traces of convent life remain to this day : a cloister built around a garden (which needs pruning and tender care !), statues, small rooms, bizzare closets, great stairways, beautiful red tiles on the floor…etc.
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Now this building has no connection with religion anymore and it's a lay school although private. As it is funded by the French state, the fees are low. There are about 600 students here, aged from 15 to about 21. We prepare degrees called baccalaureat which is the key either to professional life if you choose to take a vocational course, or to further studies if you choose a more general field of studies. The training is organized along three main field : business, applied arts and social studies. About 50 teachers work here along with the administrative staff.
School life is quite pleasant here ; we are not far from the city center, a mere ten minute's walk. We study five days a week and we usually have from four to six classes a day. Our school day starts either at 8:00 or 9:00 (more seldom at 10:00) and finishes either at 16:00 or 17:00. We have a 15 minute's break in the morning and another one in the afternoon, plus a 1 hour lunch break. There is no canteen so we have to bring our lunch (we can use microwave ovens) or get something to eat downtown.
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Let's talk about the studies here : every student has compulsory studies such as French, math, history, geography, a second language (Spanish or Italian), a bit of physics, chemistry and biology. Then we can choose options : businness studies, applied arts or social sciences. We have lots of homework and we are given regular tests which are graded (0 is the lowest grade, 20 is the top grade).
Every year the teacher offer lots of extra-school activities like drama, creative writing, trips to foreign countries, exchanges with partner school in Europe. This year we are starting this garden project with your school and we are very excited about it, although we may be a little slow to react !!
By Deborah Sowadego and Chantal Chanh - form : 1° STG (business studies)
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