Research shows that bilingual learning is not only cognitively beneficial and critical in development of language capabilities, but it also teaches values and beliefs that enhance intercultural understanding and global awareness.
The primary school and the education program are designed to facilitate the bilingual program. To maximise the early development of French language in an English speaking community students in Kindergarten, Year 1 and Year 2 have four days in French instruction and one in English (80:20 split). By Year 3 students have developed basic French literacy. They then have 50:50 English/French instruction from Year 3 to Year 6, inclusive.
To support the development of bilingualism and to promote ‘switching’, a critical aspect of bilingualism, students have up to three hours per week in bilingual periods where French and Australian teachers work together with each class in which students are expected to operate in both languages. That is, Kindergarten and Year 1 have three hours and Years 2 to 4 have one hour per week. Bilingual hour components of the curriculum are set out in overviews.
By Year 6 students are working bilingually at an age-appropriate level.