French will inspire you to engage with the world, different societies and cultures, so that you can broaden your tolerance, adaptability, knowledge and thinking skills

Head of Languages and Team Leader of French Mrs K Christie
Teacher of French and Spanish Mrs S Richi-Basurto
Languages Faculty Coach Miss E Lopez-Gamero
Teacher of French Mrs H Massey
Teacher of French and Spanish Mr A Bravo Esquivel

In Year 7, all students have the opportunity to experience each of the four languages on offer at Bishop Luffa (French, German, Spanish and Latin) within a carousel over three terms. Students have 5 periods per fortnight. Before the end of Year 7, students will be asked (in consultation with parents/guardians) to decide on one language to study for Year 8 and 9. From Year 8, where possible, classes are grouped in order to support student ability.

In Years 8 and 9, students study their chosen language for 5 periods per fortnight.  In Year 9, students start the GCSE course.  There is an expectation that students continue their chosen language through to GCSE in Year 11.  We offer students the opportunity to study A'Level French, German, Spanish and Latin in Years 12 and 13.  Further details about the A'Level courses are available on the Sixth Form website.


Students will develop their linguistic confidence in a safe and supportive environment in which they are encouraged to take risks. The lessons foster cooperation, collaboration and teamwork.  Students will develop their linguistic skills through the use of authentic materials (songs, articles, stories) in a positive atmosphere. Their teachers are experts in building positive relationships and they will have high expectations of students to engage and adapt to the pace of their lessons. Students will find teachers draw on their own experiences, which helps to take the subject outside of the classroom. They will be challenged to question where they have seen language used in the wider world, out of school. Students will be given the opportunity to participate in a residential visit abroad.

French Learning Journey

This is a visual representation of how students' knowledge and skills develop through the French curriculum.

(click on the image below to view a larger version)

French Learning Journey

Why Study French at GCSE?

Around 75% of the world's population don’t speak a word of English. Learning a language at GCSE will help you to develop your language learning skills, even though you might not know which language you will need in the future.

According to research carried out by the BBC, on average, people who use languages in their jobs earn around 8% more per year.

French is the most sought-after language for graduates, with 54 per cent of employers saying that the language is useful to their business. Most of the job vacancies with a language requirement request a French speaker, according to the British Council’s 2017 Languages for the Future Report.

Learning French at GCSE will help you to:

  • develop your confidence
  • improve your communication skills
  • have an awareness and understanding of other cultures and communities where French is spoken.
  • demonstrate that you have learnt important skills
  • develop transferable language learning skills
  • be able to communicate effectively and present yourself in front of others
  • stand out from the crowd (particularly for university or job applications)
  • improve your understanding of your first language
  • You will be able to use the skills you have learnt in a variety of future careers. You never know where learning a language might take you; currently with over 6000 different languages in the world and more than 300 spoken in the UK, there has never been a more important time to learn a foreign language. To quote Nelson Mandela, "If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart."

Outline of syllabus content.  Topics covered are within three themes, as follows:

  • Theme 1: Identity and culture.
  • Theme 2: Local, national, international and global areas of interest.
  • Theme 3: Current and future study and employment.

GCSE Assessment

Students are assessed on four skills at the end of Year 11 which carry equal weighting; listening, reading, speaking and writing. French has a Foundation Tier and a Higher Tier but students must take all four question papers at the same tier.

  • Listening paper: 25% of the final grade.
  • Reading paper: 25% of the final grade.
  • Writing paper plus translation: 25% of the final grade.
  • Speaking assessment (recorded in the school and marked by AQA examiners): 25% of the final grade.

GCSE French Exam specification information

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