L'Institution Sainte Marie
Ribeauvillé, France

L'Institution Sainte Marie is situated in Alsace, a region in north-eastern France. It is a semi-rural area, Ribeauvillé being a touristic town along the wine route. It's 15 kms away from Colmar, 70 kms away from Strasbourg and Basel and 40 kms from the German border and the Rhine.

It is composed of three unities: a boarding school, a primary school and a lower-secondary school. It's a private school which has a contract with the French Ministry of Education, which means that the students take the official national tests and the teachers are paid by the State.

The boarding school hosts 100 boys and girls between 6 and 17 years old. The primary school has 5 classes for 100 pupils between 6 and 10 years old. The secondary school has 9 classes for 200 students between 11 and 16 years old.There are 25 teachers and 20 other staff members including maintenance personnel, educational staff or administrative staff.

The principal, Miss Thomann Remond is assisted by the Primary School Director Mr Rothan and the Boarding School Director Miss Antoni.

There are three separate buildings: the primary school and the boarding school are together in a nice big park at the upper limit of the town and the secondary school is on another site in the town centre next to the convent of the Religious Congregation the school is linked to.

In France the students go to school for seven weeks and then have a two-week holiday period for All Saints Day, for Christmas, for the winter holidays, for the Easter holidays and then two months holidays during the summer.

The students go to school from Monday to Friday. We start at 8.15 AM and finish at 4.30 PM with a 1,5 hour-break for lunchtime when they all go to the canteen and have a cooked meal. On Wednesdays the school day finishes at 12.00 and the afternoon is free. Each lesson lasts for 55 minutes and there are 7 lessons a day. The students have two breaks every day one at 10 in the morning and one at 3.30 in the afternoon.

The school has a gym in the secondary school, two school libraries one for the primary school and one for the secondary school, an IT room. Most classrooms are equipped with computers and projectors and the classrooms are specialized i.e there are science rooms, language rooms, history rooms or study rooms.

The teachers can meet the parents twice a year during the planned meetings or they can ask for a private meeting whenever they think it is necessary. They can also get in touch with the teachers through Pronote, software where they can send emails, see the marks of their child or consult the progress of their child's work.

The students get 3 reports a year with marks for every subject out of 20.

During Wednesday afternoons, sports activities are organized for the students and they can compete in different sports against other school teams.

The teachers often propose projects or school trips to the students. Poland, England, Ireland, the Netherlands, Italy or Spain are countries where exchanges or school trips were organized in the previous years. School plays are also staged and the students could take part in projects such as Mac Beth, Romeo and Juliet or Ubu Roi.

The Erasmus projects for the teachers and the students for the years 2016-2018 offer the school an incredible opportunity to discover new cultures, meet people, widen their horizon, share ideas and practise their English.

The school website is: www.stemarie-ribeau.fr