Welcome From Our Middle School Head
Our Middle School is now 10 years strong with close to 100 students!
Middle School students at FASPS engage in a bilingual curriculum that provides the academic and critical thinking skills necessary for success in high school and beyond. Emphasis is placed on fostering students’ sense of personal responsibility and independence, as well as cultivating cultural diversity, excellence, integrity and a sense of community to become forward thinking citizens who take action with a complex and interconnected world.
The curriculum in is an extension of our current elementary program. At the Middle School, we continue to use English and French as languages of instruction with an approximate 50% distribution. Our program is fully open to current FASPS students as well as to students enrolled in French American schools locally and throughout North America. It is also open to students in French schools in France and worldwide.
There are many aspects of our innovative program that makes us a unique choice for young adolescents. Our students boast about the many ways in which they learn through both disciplinary and interdisciplinary trajectories. To build conceptual and skills-based mastery, we offer challenging courses in disciplines of Chinese, Drama, French Language Arts, History-Geography, Humanities, Math, Musique, Physical Education, Science, Spanish, Technology and Visual Art. By learning math through both an American and French approach that covers geometry and algebra, our students are well challenged and ready for high school. Science and technology are taught in French which places a strong emphasis on engineering and design. Oral and written skills are developed through a variety of fiction and non-fiction tasks, including debate, research and essay, all of which enrich critical thinking. How exciting it is to think that our students will have had access to at least three languages, two of which will be acquired, by the time they graduate!
We also believe that students need to transfer their skills and understanding across the disciplines and to apply them when encountering unfamiliar contexts. Therefore, we offer an interdisciplinary learning week (SEED week) based on a theme selected by the students (2017: Consumption, 2018: Equality, 2019: the Future). This week uses an off-the-grid schedule of activities that include outside speakers, excursions, hands-on activities, research, simulations and student-led projects. In addition, our families have much enthusiasm for our learning labs and flexible learning times that offer students groupings for learning across the middle school grades. Learning labs are opportunities for teachers to share a different side of themselves and their passions with the students. Flexible learning times are used to offer mini courses of 2–4 weeks, to prepare for trips, assemblies, guest speakers, and school events. Finally, our overnight trips are an integral part of experiential learning and community building.
This blend of traditional and innovative educational approaches provides a caring and inclusive environment for adolescent learning, one that supports holistic, life-long learning, a growth mindset, and resilience for meeting academic challenge.
Students in Middle School are given the space to explore social interactions within a positive and supportive environment through a variety of enriching activities beyond the classroom. Our advisory program includes socio-emotional learning lessons and individual support. Our retreats, experiential learning day trips and overnight trips create an inclusive culture and community. Assemblies are held with a focus on our school values. Each year, all students have opportunities to mentor, serve as FASPS ambassadors and engage in service learning activities.
Sports and physical education take place at the adjacent Stroum Jewish Community Center (SJCC) facilities, which include a gymnasium and a swimming pool.
All our students are provided a Surface for learning accompanied by technology safety instructions. We seek a balance between hands-on learning, and innovative and traditional methods for communicating understanding.
In May 2012, the Middle School became fully accredited by the French Ministry of Education. This was an exceptional feat for a school so young. All our students take the DELF (Diplome d'etudes et langue francaise) at the end of grade 8, for which we currently have a 100% pass rate. In 2015, our Middle School also became fully accredited by the Northwest Association of Independent Schools. These organizations represent schools that share a common philosophy—a commitment to a high quality, challenging, international education.
Upon completion of Middle School, students are well-prepared to attend a wide range of high schools both public and private, locally, nationally, and internationally. In recent years, our graduating students were well received into the schools that they chose to attend. They have reported a successful transition into these schools and that they were well prepared in for their course work.
We invite you to learn more about this program through our publications, coffee conversations and open houses that take place each fall (visit the FASPS website for the next open house date) and/or by contacting me with any further questions.
- Our Mission (What We Do): We challenge students to excel academically and thrive in French, American, and international cultures.
- Our Vision (Why We Do It): To inspire the next generation of global citizens to learn, understand, and act wisely in a multicultural world
- Our Core Values: Excellence | Integrity | Cultural Agility | Community