An Explanation Of The French School System

Many students face challenges to understand this kind of school system. The biggest nightmare is understanding the weighted grade calculator and the grading levels. So as to make things clear, you should know the different grades and age categories.  The following is an explanation of how to Calculate Grades in the French school.

The pre-school

This grade is not considered compulsory for all children. You can decide to or not take your child to school. It is composed of nursery, pre-kindergarten, and kindergarten. Children in this category are of three, four, and five years respectively. In the United Kingdom, pre-kindergarten is referred to as reception and kindergarten as year one.

Elementary school

Categories in elementary school include the following.

  • The first grade is composed of children aged six years. It is also known as year two in the UK.
  • Children of second grade are of seven years. In the UK, it is referred to as year three.
  • The third grade consists of children aged eight years. In the UK, it is known as year four.
  • The fourth-grade children are of nine years and it is also called year five in the UK.
  • The last grade is the fifth or year six in the UK. The children are of ten years.

The school children age

Children should enter this category at the age of six but sometimes it may differ. Let us look at the following examples.

  • A child who is five years but almost turning six might join. They will eventually complete when having six years.
  • Other children might get enrolled at the age of six and finish this stage at seven years of age.
  • Due to unavoidable circumstances, some children may repeat. This is because unique cases are present at times.

 The “L’Enseignement Secondaire”

It is indicated that it is mandatory until a child attains a minimum of sixteen years. There is no exception during admission.

The “Le Collège” or middle school

This is compulsory for children between eleven and sixteen years of old. In the end, a special test (“le brevet“) is administered. Have a look at the following summary of grades and their respective years.

  • Grade six at eleven years.
  • Grade seven at twelve years.
  • Grade eight at thirteen tears.
  • Grade nine at fourteen years.

Le Lycée or High School

Children of this category are aged between sixteen and eighteen years. They can attain a diploma called “le bac” either in languages or even sciences.  It prepares them to attain special expertise like cooking, hairdressing, and mechanics. This leads to an advanced diploma, either CAP or BEP. Here are the categories involved.

  • Children of fifteen years in Grade ten
  • Children of sixteen years in grade eleven
  • Children of seventeen years in grade twelve

The “L’Enseignement Supérieur” or Higher studies

After high school, children go to college for advanced studies or the “des études supérieures”. For qualification, a special test must be passed.

“Le Homeschooling” in France

This is homeschooling in English and it has been legalized but uncommon. It favors mostly children with medical complications. Evaluations are frequently taken so as to ensure educational standards are met.


If you have always found it tricky to understand and Calculate Grades in the French educational system, that is now sorted.

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