Offering a French bilingual education, the Lycée Français Charles de Gaulle is located in the heart of London, in the borough of Kensington. It has 4 feeder primary schools: André Malraux, Marie d’Orliac, South Kensington, and Wix. These English/French bilingual schools leave to pupils the choice, at 16 years, to pursue either the French curriculum, or the English curriculum, which includes GCSEs and A-levels. Encompassing its on-site primary (South Kensington) and secondary school, the Kensington Lycée is the UK’s biggest French school, with 3,000 pupils. Some places are reserved for French children. However, competition for the other places is very high. Children attending the feeder primaries for Lycée Charles de Gaulle have a guaranteed space in the secondary school. This is why the competition for entry is so fierce.
To understand the difference between the French and British education systems, read our blog here.
André Malraux Primary School for a French bilingual education
Located in the borough of Ealing, André Malraux welcomes 250 pupils between 3 and 10 years old. The school owns extensive green spaces in which pupils can play – which is rare in central London. It is accredited by the AEFE (Agence pour l’Enseignement Français à l’Étranger – Overseas French Teaching Agency) and follows the French curriculum. Potential pupils need a minimum of French knowledge to be accepted. Pupils benefit from 26 hours of teaching per week, including 3 to 4 hours of intensive English.
Marie d’Orliac Primary School
Bigger than André Malraux, Marie d’Orliac has 700 pupils aged between 3 and 10 years old. It is located in Fulham and is considered one of the best bilingual primary and nursery schools in London. This school also benefits from lots of green outdoor space and is accredited by AEFE for its French curriculum. Pupils benefit from a choice of the French curriculum with intensive English, or a French bilingual education path with an English and French teaching parity. The little ones don’t necessarily need knowledge of the French language to gain admission, but older children do.
South Kensington School
As the name suggests, this primary is located in the borough of South Kensington, on the site of of the Lycée Charles de Gaulle. 500 children between 3 and 10 years old attend this school. Like André Malraux and Marie D’Orliac, it is accredited by AEFE and teaches a French curriculum for 26 hours per week, including 3 to 4 hours of intensive English. All children need a basic knowledge of French to enter the school.
Located in Clapham, this school welcomes 260 children between 4 and 10 years old. In this borough, if you would like your children to attend a French bilingual nursery, we recommend l’École du Parc. Children choose between a French bilingual education with a parity of languages, or a French curriculum accredited by AEFE with intensive English lessons. The smallest children do not need any knowledge of French to obtain a space.
Why apply for a space in the feeder primary schools for Lycée Charles de Gaulle?
There are many advantages to having your children attend one of these feeder schools. Your children will be bilingual – a very important skill in today’s global society. Watch our webinar on the benefits of bilingualism here. They will grow up with an understanding of both French and British cultures. They will have a guaranteed place in the secondary school. Plus, the annual fees are much lower than those of a “classic” private school in London.
How to apply?
Applications are split into 7 admissions campaigns that last 4 weeks each (for 2021/2022, they took place between 19/10/2020 and 18/08/2021). Applications are made through an online platform – except in-year applications, for which a form has to be filled.
In addition to the online platform, you will need:
- Birth certificate of your child (or a family record book)
- IDs of the family
- Photocopy of your child’s vaccination records
- Proof of employment and address in London
- An authorisation signed by both parents (consent to the child’s registration in the school)
- A dated and signed copy of the “Rules and Procedures” form
- Last two years’ school reports
For CP (Year 2) and above, the Head of the school may request an interview with your child to assess their level of French. The annual fees are between £8,053 and £10,378.
Read about other London primary schools that offer a French bilingual education here.