Unley High hosts French bilingual schools from across Australia

Adelaide’s two French bilingual schools are on show to educators from across the country, as Unley High School hosts the third Annual Australian Association for French English Bilingual Schools (AAFEBS) Conference from today.

The conference is providing professional learning for educators from primary and secondary bilingual schools where they will share in knowledge, experience and expertise in bilingual education within an Australian setting.

Teachers and leaders from bilingual and binational schools across Australia have travelled to Adelaide to attend.

The AAFEBS is comprised of 3500 students and 310 educators from 14 member schools across Australia.

Unley High School and Highgate School are the two South Australian schools represented, having both introduced the AAFEBS program in 2017.

Education Minister John Gardner welcomed the national event coming to Adelaide for the first time.

“Our bilingual schools provide a challenging and engaging environment that allows students to develop essential skills and enhance their academic achievement,” said Minister Gardner.

“Learning a second language is beneficial for students’ overall cognitive and academic development, with a clear link between learning another language and development in English.

“This conference will allow our schools to build authentic relationships with other experienced French bilingual schools, strengthening the quality of education provided to students in the program.

“As our schools expand this program to more year levels in the years ahead, they will benefit significantly from lessons already learnt in other jurisdictions.”

Unley High School Principal Brenda Harris said that the introduction of French bilingual education has been welcomed by local families in the area, and that hosting the conference was a fantastic opportunity for the school.

“As one of the newer French bilingual schools, we’re very excited to welcome colleagues from across Australia to the annual national conference,” said Ms Harris.

“We’re looking forward to working with the highly experienced educators who are attending and learning more about teaching strategies used in other French bilingual programs.”