Au revoir! A class of Grade 6 and 7 students from Ecole Davis Road school are thrilled to have the chance to practice their French in Quebec. They are also fundraising to bring a Quebec class to the Island next year.

Au revoir! A class of Grade 6 and 7 students from Ecole Davis Road school are thrilled to have the chance to practice their French in Quebec. They are also fundraising to bring a Quebec class to the Island next year.

Language skills put to the test

Group from Ecole Davis Road School in Ladysmith are preparing for Quebec exchange

A group of 23 students at Ecole Davis Road School are about to get a new lesson in immersion.

Teacher Sean Walsh applied to SEVEC for, and was awarded, the chance to take a group of Grade 6 and 7 students to Sainte-Croix, Quebec, to learn more about French culture and put their language skills to the test.

SEVEC is paying for the flights and accommodations in Quebec.

“They tour us around Quebec and experience the different cultures and get boarded by their families,” said Walsh.

“They are totally immersed in the language.”

The experience will bring a new level of education, said Walsh, and will give the students a better understanding of their own language skills.

“One thing they’ll never experience in B.C. is full immersion in French,” said Walsh, noting the kids are taught all day in French at the school, but don’t often have to speak it at home.

“These families won’t speak any English.”

Walsh said the excitement is mounting among the kids.

“They are super-pumped,” said Walsh. “They’ve already got fundraising going.”

The group is trying to plan their trip for the end of January to make it for the Carnaval festival.

The school is trying to raise $10,000 because they, too, will be playing host when the French students visit Ladysmith and the Island later in the year.

“The expectation is that we show them Vancouver Island,” said Walsh.

Some of the fundraising plans include a garage sale and car wash. There is also an account set up at the Junction Bottle Depot under Grade 6/7 Sean Walsh/Helen Fall.

The first garage sale is set for October 22 at the school.

The trip is at risk of being called off if there is a full teacher strike before the trip.