Sunday, November 6, 2011

More adult perspectives on middle school

Years and years ago, when I was in school, I went to French Immersion from K to 12, and when I was growing up and kids transferred to other schools, at the back of my mind I assumed that they had dropped out. I was being self-centered, but given my limited experience, I couldn't think any other way. If you left the school you were no longer part of the world my classmates and I knew. Since I got into the school system as an adult, I know that kids get transferred to other schools and other school divisions all the time, and for a variety of reasons. Sometimes it's the quality of the education, sometimes it's due to bullying, sometimes the other school is just closer to home. There are many reasons why a child goes to a different school from grade to grade, or halfway through the year. The school I work at is half English, half French Immersion. It's the only French Immersion middle school in the division, and I got to thinking this evening about that.
I come from a Francais background, so it wasn't that hard to do my 13 years of FI. I got to talking in June with one of the French teachers I work with, about one of the Eights in their class who was going on to Grade Nine at the high school. The student had struggled through French and was now going on to even more French. A sibling who is now in Grade Eleven had struggled as well, and had crossed over into English because French was too difficult, and there was a possibility that this student would end up crossing over as well before long. This evening I got to thinking about my own experience in a purely French Immersion school and what probably happened to students in similar situations. The closest English high school wasn't far away, but where friends are concerned, that school could've been half a world away.
Given all this, the kids who go to the dual-track high school are perhaps luckier than they realize. If they're struggling with French and need to cross over, at least they'll still have their friends close by. Perhaps not in the same classes, but at least they'll see them at lunch and during spares. This seems like a pretty unique situation to me, for if they were going to the schools I've been to, they would have transferred and perhaps not seen many of their friends again until college or university, if that.
I know that I do not blog as often as I once did, and I apologize for that. However, nobody reads my blog, so no harm, right? BYE.

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