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Traditions in School

Understand the different traditions in French schools...

Back to school – La Rentrée: At the end of the school year in June, the class teacher for a child's next school year gives parents a "school list" of items required by each child for the following school year. Towards the end of July and August, local supermarkets will be well stocked with standard school stationary, bags and other required things for La Rentrée. Local bookshops (papeterie) also stock the required goods, including the cahier de texte (a diary used to mark all the homework). For parents with more than one child and with a low income, there is a sum paid to help with these purchases: the Aide à la rentrée scolaire is paid in August by CAF. If a household has supplied income details and household income falls below the minimum level (barème) then this bonus will arrive automatically in the post.

School Reports: Maternelles and French primary schools will send parents a report every trimester in a book specially made for this purpose. It addresses the work being done by the child. The book remains with the school after parents have read and signed it.

Parents of children in collège will receive a report every trimester. This is a detailed account of not only the child's work but also that of the class, including the average marks (moyen) for each subject, as well as the behaviour of the child and the class. Marks are out of 20 and there are warnings for poor work or behaviour as well as grades for achievement with congratulations (felicitations) for students with marks over 15/20. 
Note: This may vary from college to college but is a general practice.

Kermesse: This is the traditional end of school year celebration with market stalls, raffles, presents and other fun for the children and parents. The Kermesse vary enormously from school to school and can involve plays, shows and community meals with parents and teachers.

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