What classes are offered at EBSR?
Our classes range from 3 to 15 years old (cut-off date end of September), and prepare for admission to the Gymnase Vaudois (with Latin, Italian or Math-Physics), where students can apply for the bilingual programme; the other option is to continue towards the Matu Suisse, the IB or the French Bac.
See the programmes HERE.
Who are the families who choose EBSR?
Our community of parents is stable and includes a majority of local parents, often families of mixed nationalities, who particularly value a high level of education and multilingualism. The expats we welcome are those who stay for at least a few years and want their children to learn French fluently.
How to join the BSSR during schooling?
This is no problem if the student is curious, eager to learn and able to participate in his or her learning. For French, we will propose a solution adapted to his/her linguistic level – in a group or private setting. Math is taught in both French and English depending on the choice of the students, and is anyway individualised. English and Math levels will be tested and the programmes set up accordingly. For human and natural sciences, the classes are bilingual and not knowing French is therefore not a handicap. At the BSSR the students who want to can continue their native English curriculum while really becoming bilingual in French.
Why is the BSSR a nonprofit school?
Our school is not managed as a commercial enterprise and invests very little in marketing and “frills”. Our leading edge is first class pedagogy, small classes and innovative technology.
Is the BSSR reserved to HP (high potential or “gifted”) children?
No. Our programmes are ambitious and we require children to participate and work hard. Any normally gifted and curious child can take part. Moreover, we cannot accept HP children with special needs because of their behaviour or attitude towards school. We avoid the use of HP tags and even if a child has been identified as such, he/she usually fits in with the others without special attention.
Why is there is no indoor gym?
One cannot expect to be located in the city centre, close to the train station, the metro and the LEB, and have a sports hall, football/soccer fields and tennis courts (we use the many amenities of our Olympic city for sports classes). More generally, it must be remembered that the students are the ones who spend their day at school. Children and teenagers are generally indifferent to the more or less luxurious nature of the premises in which they learn, as long as the teaching is exciting, their learning needs are respected, their talents valued, and their words listened to. Concerning teaching equipment we have the best material with interactive whiteboards, PC and Mac, Ipads,… and last but not least: books, notebooks and pencils!
Luxurious hospitality facilities come at an extremely high cost and from our point of view, this type of investment is of little educational interest and would lead us to apply rates far too high for normal families. Our school is not part of an international for-profit group. We are free to focus on our primary mission, which is teaching. We can offer a much higher number of hours than in schools focused on profitability. We can differentiate the classes according to the languages which depend on the students’ needs. This is our real wealth, which our students appreciate every day.
One sometimes hears that in private schools, students are over-protected and ill-prepared for academic demands.
This is sometimes true. There are schools that first seek to satisfy the “customer’s needs”: they avoid high academic demands, they give encouraging grades and they provide constant help and support. Such students may take quite a fall when they are faced with the demands of real academic life.
That is not our aim. Our audience is that of intelligent and curious students, who are also generally particularly sensitive and open-minded. So here we watch closely to ensure that there is no harassment and that everyone feels comfortable in our school community.
On the other hand, from an academic point of view, we follow the most interesting and high-profile programmes, so that each student can find the challenges most capable of making him/her progress. As soon as Middle School starts, students prepare themselves for the reality of their future studies by developing the necessary skills (graded tests, end-of-year exams, essay writing, presentations, etc.). Our students are especially well prepared for the real world which awaits them.
Is it easy to move the children over to other programmes?
Technically, yes, since our level exceeds that of Swiss Harmos / France / UK / IB in all subjects. And when families have to move and we are told early enough, we of course offer help to make the transition smooth. However, moving to a local school implies that they have to take English classes from beginner’s level and will never get English Language Arts and Literature. The reverse is true if they are placed in an international programme, where they will loose their French and usually not get French writing and Literature, and no German either. (And having no German and no Italian means that it is not possible to return to public school/Swiss Maturité easily). It is important to remember that languages can only develop through continuous use and further formal learning. Just speaking a bit is not enough, and languages spoken at age 10 can easily be lost by age 15. School programmes are not interchangeable and each has its own specificities – the BSSR programme’s features are full bilingualism and biculturalism, and aim at a very high level.
The bilingual curriculum of the BSSR ends at the end of Middle School when students have reached a C1 language level and have become fully bilingual, bicultural, and have read the classics in both languages. Families wishing to return to the public school system will then choose the entrance exam to the Gymnase (high school) with an interesting bilingual option, and those wishing to continue in the private sector may choose the Swiss Maturité, the IB or the French Bacccalaureate.
Timetables and holidays
Our holidays coincide with the official vaudois school holidays, except for an extra week at Christmas. Please find the timetables and holidays HERE.
Can I drop my children off before 8 a.m.?
No. The school opens at 8 a.m.
What activities are offered after school?
We offer a great choice of activities, depending on age and interests: for the younger ones, we offer activities with music and dance twice a week, and otherwise various handicraft activities like painting, modeling, illustrating fairytales, etc.
For the older ones we have a Chess Club, Collage, Yoga, Swimming at three levels (beginners, medium, advanced), Music and Rythm, Music and Dance, German Club (films, songs and activities in German), Painting, Sewing, Modeling, etc.
Starting 2017-18 we will also offer to take the children to the Puppet Theater and to the Concert on Wednesday afternoons (about every two weeks); on the other afternoons we will organise activities around the theater and music pieces.
Do you offer activities during holidays?
Yes we do, during the Summer holidays. Please note that they are intended to teach English.
First week: culinary experiences
Second week: scientific experiments
If you are interested please send a mail to summercamp[at]ecole-bilingue.ch
Is there a school bus?
If there are a sufficient number of children for a particular route, this can be organised. Most children are dropped off at school by parents who often car-share or take public transportation.
Are meals offered at noon?
All the children eat lunch in the school cafeteria. The meals are prepared by a French cook and the food is fresh and varied. Thus the children learn to appreciate a variety of dishes. Moreover, snacks are provided during breaks.
Can I give my child a lunch box?
No, this is reserved for children with allergies who have a medical certificate. The meal supervision is charged in any case.
What are the rates and fees?
Please consult the list of rates HERE. These rates cover all charges. There will be no supplementary bills.
Do you give scholarships?
A few scholarships are granted each year, from 2P up. Please write directly to the Director explaining your situation and that of your child.
What does bilingual teaching mean?
We believe that the acquisition of true bilingualism at school must be preceded by a period of active language learning without which some children may never learn to speak correctly. Studies have shown that children placed in a second language context without special attention to their speaking abilities can result in good passive knowledge of the language, but is often accompanied by deficient oral and writing skills. We have therefore developed an interactive language immersion programme with singing, games and films that enables children under 10 years to become active speakers within 2 years. They can then be put into the mother tongue classes corresponding to their ages.
What maths programme do you offer?
We use Cuisenaire for the 2 years of kindergarten and the 1st primary. This programme tackles the four basic operations at the same time, as well as fractions, and enables children to approach the world of mathematics directly.
From 2nd primary on, we use the Singapore programme, either in English or French. You can learn more about the Singapore Books we use (Standard edition, not US) HERE.
What kind of early science programme do you offer?
You can consult the programme HERE. Our science teaching is based on progressive discovery. The facts learned during one school year are reintegrated into next year’s programme, at a more complex level. Hands-on learning (observations under the microscope, practical experiments) is essential. The teaching material is in both English and French.
Last updated December 2016