In Miami, FIPA works out for the promotion of French language

Sophie Jamet is the new president of FIPA. She has lived in Miami for the past year and she has agreed to speak with us about the association and its mission to promote language studies and French culture in the International Studies (IS) programs of Miami.
Three international companies explain as well their choice to support its mission.


L’e: Precisely, what is the role of FIPA ?

SJ. After it’s creation in 1986, FIPA played a double role in Miami. One action was to serve "citizens" as a liaison between French authorities, parents and the education authority of Miami Dade, as well as an operational roll in the French IS program. Eventually, the FIPA financed international professors, along with the purchase of educational materials, textbooks and school supplies ... we are now established in 4 schools: Sunset and Coconut Grove in the primary level, Carver Middle School and ISCHS for the High School level.

L’e : Do you have any particular objectives for this upcoming school year ?

SJ. Yes, our major obstacle to overcome this year is to collect founds for the establishment of a course. For the definition of the curriculum and needs, we work with Frédéric Bernerd, teacher and educational coordinator ISCH. The implementation of this plan is essential for the future of the program since it IS a condition for further approval of the curriculum by the Ministry of National Education in France.

L’e : what made you want to work for FIPA?

SJ. When planning our arrival in Miami we were surprised to find out about the existance of the IS programme. Unique in it’s field, it allowed children to receive a bilingual education in American public schools from 1st to 12th grade.

When we arrived here, with our two children we were gladly surprised to continue to discover the excellent level of education, the quality and the interaction of the teaching staff.
The results prove it: Carver is ranked first in amongst Middle Schools in Florida and fifth nationally. Sunset Elementary School won in 2008, the prestigious Goldman Sachs for Excellence in International Education.

Therefore I wanted to get involved in promoting the program and participate in its development.

L’e : Is the access to these school programs reserved for children who’se first language is French?

SJ. No! This is what contributes to the richness of this programme. Yes of course the French community will benefit greatly, but also the larger public will too.
55% of students are not French and are from more than 20 nationalities! Nationals of various ethnic origins who enjoy French culture and the high level of education provided in these schools.

L’e : a final message ?

SJ. I would like to educate your readers on the key role of our association in the local economy. In a city as cosmopolitan as Miami, the existence of a bilingual French option is a wonderful opportunity for our country and its economic influence. In addition many companies and French nationals are choosing to Miami-Dade because of the existence of this program.

FIPA is not only a concrete way to participate in a public and cultural education while serving the French community but also an opportunity for an international audience interested in France.

For more info:
By e-mail:

  • Please note that Sophie Jamet was president until May 28, 2014. The new FIPA’s president is Mr Roger Pardo.
Companies that support FIPA:

The Coty Group

The company that took on the name of the perfumer, François Coty is a group of fragrances and cosmetics of international standing supported by two offices, one in New York and the other in Paris. Representing many American brands, such as Calvin Klein and Marc Jacobs as well as French such as Chloe, Balenciaga or Lancaster and many others. The company generates nearly $ 4 billion in sales. This international dimension requires the recruitment of international profiles.

"Immediately, candidates ask us about the local provision of education, people wishing to find an accessible French program," said Tanguy de Bruchet.
Thus, for Coty, the action of IFAP is to support a public education system itself, in a situation described as difficult, it is essential. "We need this solution" [French education] "should be preserved and it continues its development here in Miami," adds M. de Bruchet.
This free education is exceptional here in the United States, it must continue. That’s why the group Coty chose to support FIPA.

L’Oreal Travel Retail Americas “Parbel”, as a subsidiary of L’Oreal France in Miami, supports FIPA in an effort to promote the study of the French language and culture in Miami Dade Public schools for children to broaden their international exposure.”

Club Med located in Miami supports as well FIPA’s mission.

Published on September 9, 2012

Dernière modification : 29/05/2014

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