Why You Don’t Need to Know French to Attend High School at the Lycée Français de Chicago

No need for French fluency at an international school with a very French name? It’s true. The head of school for Lycée Français de Chicago explains.

For many, the name “Lycée Français de Chicago” evokes images of a school filled only with fluent French speakers. For a Chicago-area family looking for an international high school experience, you may be wondering how it could possibly be a good fit for your English-speaking student.

Don’t let the name fool you, says Eric Veteau, head of school for the Lycée Français de Chicago (LFC). “The only French word you need to know to attend our school is ‘croissant’ and that’s because we serve them in our school cafeteria,” he says of LFC, whose high school is located on a beautiful Ravenswood campus that welcomes students from 15 months old to senior year.

Whatever your native language, the LFC’s International Baccalaureate (IB) program, which begins in Grade 9, offers a truly unique international experience in Chicago.

Wait – how is this possible? Isn’t this a French school?

LFC’s high school offers two world-renowned diploma programs—one in English and one in French.

“Our IB program, taught in English, offers student-led learning enriched by our unique international perspective,” Veteau explains. “Our amazing IB teaching staff hail from many corners of the world, including Australia, Canada, Europe and the United States, and help make an LFC education truly special.”

Students seeking an international education thrive in LFC’s IB program, which prepares them for a globalized world. Through the IB, the most in-demand international curriculum of today–pursued by two million students worldwide—the LFC offers business, history, global politics and psychology as well as multiple levels of mathematics and language classes. While French language study is part of the LFC IB curriculum, students can also choose Spanish, German or Mandarin and can even pursue several different bilingual diploma options. 

4 Facts about the IB

The unique benefits of the IB program at LFC

The IB program at LFC is uniquely positioned to offer an international perspective combined with cultural exposure. This diversity is reflected in the program’s structure, says Veteau, which includes opportunities for trips and exchanges with other IB schools. 

“What’s wonderful about studying abroad with the IB program is that when a student attends one of our sister schools abroad, they continue working toward their degree with no interruption. The International Baccalaureate curriculum will be the same wherever they go.”

Lycée Français de Chicago is committed to creating a global learning environment, encouraging students to experience and appreciate the richness of cultural diversity. “We want them to learn about every subject from a truly global perspective,” says Veteau. “This is what sets our curriculum apart and prepares our graduates to be true global citizens.”

The transformative experience of LFC’s IB program

The IB program at LFC transforms students over four years, instilling an international mindset and fostering a spirit of curiosity and adventure, says Veteau.

“Graduates leave our school with the confidence to navigate diverse environments and a broader understanding of the world. The opportunities for travel, international exchange and cultural exposure contribute to this transformation, preparing students for success in various countries and cultures.”

Teacher Giving Class at Lycée Français de Chicago
Photo Credit: Lycée Français de Chicago

Last year, for example, 70% of LFC graduates applied to universities in more than one country—with 90% being accepted to one of their top three choices—and are now attending their best-fit colleges in the U.S., Canada and Europe.

If your student is considering an international education without borders, the IB program at LFC might be the perfect fit, says Veteau.

“Bring your curiosity, and you’ll leave with a world of opportunities.” 

To learn more about the IB program at Lycee Francais de Chicago, visit www.lyceechicago.org.

Jennifer Kales
Jennifer Kales
Content editor Jennifer Kales has been in the business of writing for more than 20 years creating advertising copy, blogs, books and everything in between. She loves helping Chicago Parent clients tell their stories in a way that resonates with audiences.


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