In a rapidly globalising world, exposure to foreign cultures and places is an important and valuable experience to prepare you for university and life. Not only will it make you more appealing to admission officers and future employers, it will also greatly enrich your perspectives.
If you’re looking for a diverse, cultural and affordable study experience, look no further than Saint-Denis International School. Nestled in the heart of the Loire Valley, this is a traditional French boarding school for students across middle and high school levels. With robust academic programmes, a diverse student body, and experienced teachers, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a school that better nurtures students into well-rounded graduates poised for success.
A quaint, historical environment
Students at Saint-Denis International School live and learn in a close to magical environment. The school is located in the Loire Valley, home to medieval castles, charming cobbled streets, classical clock towers and a stunning landscape, all within a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Students can spend weekends exploring the Garden of France, hiking verdant forests, and taking in the fresh air and charms of the countryside. It’s as if you’ve stepped into a picturesque fairytale.
That’s not to divert from the historic town of Loches, which is fortified by 12th century ramparts and a keep constructed 1,000 years ago. Few schools can offer a location as historical, quaint and stunning as this.
Over longer breaks, students can explore the surrounding areas. Regular bus lines from Loches connect to the vibrant student city of Tours, nicknamed “Little Paris,” for its cosmopolitan and artistic culture. The high-speed rail and airport also serve as convenient gateways to Paris, London, Dublin, Marrakesh, and more.
A multilingual student body
If you’re looking to speak French like a native, look no further. Saint-Denis has over 25 years of experience teaching French to foreign students at every level. The school also offers online French courses taught by experienced, native-speaking teachers, providing a more flexible and accessible manner in which to learn a new language. Bilingual or trilingual study is encouraged at Saint-Denis, with 89% of students taking on at least two foreign languages.
The Saint-Denis boarding experience only enhances this. Saint-Denis offers a weekly boarding schedule, where students are exposed to a diverse community of local and international students hailing from over 30 countries. As an international student, you’ll also benefit from staying with a host family over weekends and school holidays. All host families are connected to the school in some way, and will help you acclimatise to your life in France, from providing meals and transportation to integrating you into French culture.
With this, you’d be better equipped for the French Baccalaureate examinations, which are taken at the end of a three-year programme specially designed to prepare students for university. Saint-Denis offers a variety of French language General Baccalaureate specialties that span several fields of study, including mathematics; history-geography, geo-politics and political science; economics; literature and languages; art; engineering; the humanities; and more. This is an ideal option if you’re looking to maximise your time in the country.
If you want to integrate more than one language into your repertoire, Saint-Denis also offers a Franco-American programme in the form of the American section of the International Option of the French Baccalaureate (OIB). This essentially adds a mix of extra English-taught subjects into the French Baccalaureate. To add to the appeal, the OIB is also recognised by the US’s College Board, which will definitely open up pathways into top higher education institutions all over the world.
Options for cultural or linguistic exchanges at a variety of schools are available to students as well. Saint-Denis offers students the exciting opportunity to go on linguistic and cultural exchanges in the UK, Eastern Europe, New Zealand, the US, and Taiwan, among others. Combined, you’re guaranteed a unique mix of a traditional and global study experience.
As a result, you’ll most definitely be shaped into a truly global citizen by the end of your study at Saint-Denis. Need proof? The school’s track record of sending every one of its graduates to university certainly speaks for itself.
Comprehensive health and safety protocols
Of course, the current health and travel risks presented by the pandemic are valid concerns for international students. Saint-Denis takes the safety and wellbeing of its students seriously. It has enforced a strict health protocol, including rigorous testing, mask-wearing and sanitising, as well as encouraging health passes from students and staff. Students at Saint-Denis are therefore able to enjoy a safe and relatively normal schooling experience with minimal health risks. Most importantly, this allows the school to continue welcoming students from all over the world.