The Lycee Francais de Pondichery at Puducherry is one of the most important French high schools (lycee francais) outside France and the second largest in Asia after the one in Hong Kong. It was established as the College Royal on 26 October 1826 by Eugene Panon, Comte Desbassayns de Richemont, then Governor-General of Pondicherry in French India, during the Bourbon Restoration.
Affiliated with the University of Rennes, it is the oldest lycee outside France. Today it welcomes around 1,400 students from elementary school to baccalaureat (graduation) level. It also has an interesting collection of old photographs of colonial Puducherry and collection of very rare coins of the French East Indian Company. Special permission is required to visit this colonial palace.
The Lycee Francais of Pondicherry comes under the purview of (AEFE) l’Agence pour l’Enseignement Francais l’Etranger (Agency of French Education Abroad). This is the oldest French school in Asia offering a comprehensive education from Pre-Primary school to the final year of Secondary school with general, technical and professional options. All the subjects are taught in French and a great deal of importance is placed on English and Tamil, the regional languages. The courses held at the Lycee strictly conform to the current academic program set by the French Ministry Of Education.
Regular turnovers of students who successfully pass the exams have the choice of continuing their studies either in France or in India.
Concerns about language policies are at the heart of French establishments abroad. In addition to quality education in French, it is a must to integrate the local language as well as create a strong base for English. The Indian public seeks an education of international standards. French companies based in India are seeking executives exposed to both cultures.
Bearing this in mind, the French school wishes to open wider its doors to India and the world with an innovative and ambitious project aimed at creating a section of excellence in science based on a bilingual educational system, beginning from class 9 for a new public of Indian and international students who shall be selected based on their results in the sciences and wish to complement their education in the Indian system with education in sciences in the French system in order to have access to the best schools and universities in France, India or other countries.
As a result, this double education will allow them to reach high posts of responsibility in French or Indian companies where their knowledge of both cultures will be certainly sought and valued.
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