Frequently Asked Questions
Once you’re a member for a short time, you’ll see that our structure and practice is straightforward and successful! If you’re still looking for more information, our community of motivated and caring members are always willing to help you find your way around.
Here are some FAQs to help you take your first steps…
Teaching & Learning
Does E31 offer lessons of English as a foreign language or English for beginners?
No. Candidates must already have an ability to speak and write English which will allow them to learn the language at mother-tongue level.
What teaching programme do you deliver?
The programme is based on the English National Curriculum and is adapted for the needs of bilingual pupils within the French school system.
At Primary school level you offer a choice between an integrated programme of English lessons or a programme of lessons once per week on Wednesday afternoon. Do you offer this choice at secondary level?
No. In order to be part of the English 31 scheme at secondary level, a pupil must be schooled full time at Collège/Lycée Victor Hugo.
Is the English 31 scheme a substitute for the French educational system?
Not at all. English 31 works in very close partnership with its host French schools. Apart from English and history Geography, all subjects are taught in French.
What examinations do English 31 pupils take?
At the end of Collège English 31 pupils take the Brevet International. At the end of the first year of the Lycée they take IGCSE English Language and English Literature (Cambridge International Examinations Board.) At the end of the final year of the Lycée they take the International Option of the Baccalaureate.
What is the additional workload?
In integrated primary, the English 31 programme is merged into the French timetable. Students are also given English 31 homework, and this clearly represents additional workload for the student, requiring the full support of the students’ family. However, as long as native English is used at home, there is no reason why motivated students cannot thrive in this bilingual environment. In the weekly programme in primary, the Wednesday afternoon are outside the standard French timetable, but this means students are studying English on Wednesday afternoons instead of doing other, extra-curricular activities.
Is the OIB a recognised qualification?
Yes! The OIB is officially part of the standard Baccalaureate in the French educational system. Furthermore the OIB programme is practiced in international schools throughout the world and is recognised by all major universities and higher educational institutions. Every year, English 31 students go online to universities in France, the UK and throughout the world. English 31 provides excellent support in UCAS appplications, and many students are gone onto prestigious universities, including Oxford and Cambridge.
Who are the teachers?
The teachers are all fully qualified practitioners with experience in teaching English and History within a bilingual context. Most are British, but we also have American and French colleagues. All are fluent in English and have been especially selected because of their commitment to the teaching of English in an Anglo-French context.
Does English 31 offer English language classes for adults?
No. English 31 specializes in providing English language, literature, history and geography lessons to children ages 5-18 who attend the French school system.
Admissions & Entry
Is there an application test for entry to the British Section programme?
Applicants are required to take written tests and/or interviews in order to establish their ability in English.
Do I have to live in Colomiers to use the English 31 scheme?
Not necessarily, but if you wish to join the integrated primary programme and do not live in Colomiers you will have to obtain written permission from your local town hall to transfer your child to Lucie Aubrac and the agreement from the Town Hall in Colomiers to accept your child.
Can pupils who do not speak French join the scheme?
They can and at Primary level at Lucie Aubrac there is a special class for French beginners. There is no such class at secondary level and while the school offers some support it is a very big challenge for older pupils to learn French.
Billing & Fees
Why doesn’t Airbus cover the full costs of the association?
Historically the association was established to provide English language education for British Airbus expatriates based in Toulouse. The links to Airbus remain strong and around half of the membership is directly employed by Airbus. However, for several years English 31 has been open to non-Airbus members, and for this reason these members need to pay a contribution to the staffing and running costs of the association.
How much of the costs go to front-line education?
Over 80% of the revenues of the association are directed to give front-line benefits to the students. With over 400 students in English 31, we now have 2 employees managing the administration of the association. However, the committee are all volunteers and give their time free of charge. We believe English 31 offers exceptional value for money for its membership.