AATF Exemplary French Program with Honors

Midlothian High School (VA)
AATF member: Lindsay Garrison


The Midlothian High School French Program is renowned in the central VA area for its positive impact on students and the community.  From the exchange program to our outreach at the public library, the French program and students are thriving.  Moving forward, Mesdames Garrison and Mazzola wish to carry on the tradition of a successful, enriching program.

Our intention is to continue to reach out to our community and continue the “Les Livres pour Haiti” Project, but perhaps extend it to other, lesser known Francophone countries.  In hopes of enhancing our ties with the community, our long term plan includes visits from guest speakers in our area.  Over the last two years, we have hosted speakers on the following subjects:

  • Les Châteaux de la Loire
  • Le Tour de France
  • La Mode Française (VCU Professor)
  • Le Petit Prince et Antoine de St. Exupéry
  • Babar and Madeline
  • French Military
  • La Suisse
  • Haiti
  • Le Foot
  • Bakery - visit to make baguettes
  • Virginia Museum of Fine Arts - Impressionism

Further, despite the additional work required to plan and take field trips, we will focus on local excursions for our students, including exploring more local art museums, bakeries, and theaters.  Through these out of the classroom experiences, the French Program will continue its growth and progress.

In future years, our participation in the local Congrès will continue and Midlothian will remain the school with the largest contingency and most award winners, as we are presently.  Our goal is to improve scores on the Grand Concours, by posting practice tests online and having SHF students review with students prior to testing.

Currently, Midlothian is one of two schools in Chesterfield County with two full time French teachers.  This is in part due to the strong reputation and formidable ties the program has to the community.  It is also attributed to the wide variety of choices students have once enrolled in the program.  Possible courses are an Honors/non-Honors track, French culture and cinema, AP French, IB French.  Our plan is to maintain these choices to offer students the course that most applies to their interest.  One possible consideration in future years, is offering French Literature where students would study poetry and various French novels.

Continuation of the French Exchange Program will continue as well as the continued offering of “EPals” for students who have interest in correspondence with a French student but choose not to travel.  As our colleague Spanish teachers have expressed interest in working together on a trip, we will explore this opportunity for a trip to both a French and Spanish speaking country.  This would be a viable option for students who wish to travel but whose parents are not comfortable with children staying with a family in the home.

For full information on applying for Exemplary Program status, click here.  

Created: May 29, 2017
Last Update: August 12, 2017