French Exchange Student Compares Education Systems

Anae Moreau, Staff writer

Ovid-Elsie high school has exchange students every year. This year there are exchange
students from different nationalities. They can have a culture shock, everything is different in
every country and even school are completely different, the first day, first week and even after a
month they cannot understand the culture and how things work.
If people look closer at this situation they can see how big the differences are.
The schedule here in Ovid-Elsie High School, students have seven hours of class and the same
class every day but for Europeans it’s totally different, the schedule is different every day and you
start class at 8 a.m. and finish at 6 p.m.
Compared to France, students here have five minutes between each class but in France, you work
two hours and you have a break of 15 minutes and students like to sit on a bench with their
friends and talk or do their homework. After the little break they work two hours and there is
lunch from 12 to 2 p.m. They work two hours and have a third break and they do
their last two classes and it’s the end of the school day.
The school buildings are also different.
Ovid-Elsie high school only has one floor and the American flag is in front of the school.
French high schools are not as large as in the U.S., but there’s different floors. Students go
downstairs and upstairs for their different classes and sometimes students have to go to other
American schools are like the tv shows and European teenagers dream about it.
Americans locker are really famous in France.
Exchange students can get hungry in America. The lunch is for 30 minutes and Americans don’t
eat a lot, but, for example, in France, students have an hour for lunch and eat a lot at lunch
because it’s the most important meal of the day.
In America, school is cooler and not as strict as in France, the relationship between teacher and
student is better because they don’t act like dictators and American students are more
free and not considered as “robots.” American schools organize different activities such as
homecoming dance and decoration of the hallways, but in France school is just for work.
There are so many differences and those examples are just a little part of a long list. Exchange
students may be shocked and perturbed at the beginning of their experience and sometimes
homesick, but America will give them an amazing year.