A French school on Spain’s Costa del Sol is also offering lessons in Spanish and English in a bid to make its students trilingual.
Ecole Francaise Internationale Marbella (efim) is accepting registrations for its third year of operation.
Managing director Rubi Cortes said the school on Calle Jacinto Benavente in Marbella offers “much more than traditional French schools”.
“Most French students don’t want to go outside of the French curriculum, so we stick to that but make it more innovative,” she said.
“Our four pillars of trilingualism, student happiness, educational hybridation and digital and scientific culture means our students are not only trilingual but they also develop critical thinking, emotional intelligence, and learning of skills they will need for life beyond school.”
The school is a kindergarten and elementary school. First level of secondary school opened this year, with more levels to be added in future years.
All classes are taught by a native French speaker, with learning times dedicated to each language always in native speakers.
Some subjects such as mathematics are taught in French and English or Spanish, while the history and geography of France and Spain are taught in the language of that country.
Efim also offers free linguistic activities outside school hours and arranges language certificates in French, Spanish and English for students at the end of their third grade.
Cortes said the ability to speak three languages is a “vital skill” to possess in today’s world.
“English is the language of business, it is spoken internationally and it is a must have so we want our students to feel confident in English by the time they finish their time at school,” she said.
“Spanish is also spoken a lot around the world and of course we are in Spain, and French is also important to have for its cultural value and as it is spoken in many parts of the world such as Canada and many countries in Africa.”
About 65 students were enrolled in the school’s first year in 2021.
This year, that total almost doubled to 115 – the school´s youngest child is two and a half years old, with the eldest at 12 years old.
Students must be at least three years old before December 31 this year to be registered on the current scholar year.
Cortes said she expects even more students to be enrolled next year.
“More and more people are understanding the value of being able to speak multiple languages and how it can open doors for you in the future,” she said.
Cortes also said even non-French students are enrolled in the school’s other locations across Spain including Malaga, Madrid and Barcelona – At least 60% of students come from non-French speaking backgrounds, she said.
The Ecole Française Internationale de Marbella, which is part of AEFE French lycées network and accredited by the French Ministère de l’Éducation Nationale, is currently taking enrollment registrations for next year.