Upper Secondary School Geneva
Florimont is the only private school preparing pupils for the Swiss Maturité, French baccalauréat and the International Baccalaureate, with each of these programmes taking four years. Pupils and parents are supported in making the most suitable choice but it is possible to change to another programme to reflect pupils’ interests and aptitudes.
An established broad-based curriculum.
At Florimont, the Swiss high school track (in French or bilingual French/English) covers four years (3rd, 2nd and 1st grades and Terminale) and follows the curriculum set out by the federal authorities and the Department of Education in Geneva. The diploma is accepted by all Swiss universities.
The 14 subjects that make up the diploma are examined from 2nd grade, mainly by continuous assessment, with feedback from regular tests informing the teaching.
From the first year (3rd grade), the curriculum:
– Requires pupils to choose either a subject related to the arts or a second language ;
– Offers an introduction to economics, law and scientific procedures ;
– Allows pupils to choose to study mathematics at either standard or advanced level.
In the 2nd grade, pupils choose one option in which to specialise (biology-chemistry, economics-law and applied mathematics). If they have chosen to study Spanish in 3rd grade, they must choose between Spanish or physics. An additional option and philosophy complete the curriculum from 1st grade up to Terminale.
Pupils are also required to produce an independent research paper of about 6,000 words or an artistic work (‘Travail de maturité’). The wide scope of this task encourages personal commitment and independent thinking. The results are presented by each pupil and assessed by a panel, similar to work at university.
THE EXTRAS AT FLORIMONT
As well as the courses related to the curriculum, Florimont organises preparation classes for language examinations (IGCSE, Cambridge, Goethe), an introduction to the world of industry though an observational placement as well as participation in Olympiads in different subjects, the Athéna project plus community projects and a series of debates.
The programme covers a wide-ranging and balanced curriculum consisting of:
– Humanities (Latin, French, philosophy, languages) ;
– Social science (history, geography, moral and civic education, economics);
– Science (physics, life sciences and earth science, Information Technology and digital technology) ;
– Mathematics ;
– The arts ;
– Physical education
The programme follows the Ministry of Education curriculum in addressing key knowledge areas while providing scope for an interdisciplinary approach, often using digital technology. Pupils understand and learn through hands-on class projects and a range of activities. This highlights the links between different subject areas and encourages reflection.
The mission of the IB
“The International Baccalaureate aims to develop inquiring, knowledgeable and caring young people who help to create a better and more peaceful world through intercultural understanding and respect.
These programmes encourage students across the world to become active, compassionate and lifelong learners who understand that other people, with their differences, can also be right.
All the IB programmes are aimed at developing people who are sensitive to the international context, aware of the links between human being, mindful of the responsibility that each of us have towards the planet and keen to contribute to building a better and more peaceful world.” (ibo.org)
The IB programme is aimed at encouraging pupils to develop certain competences and personal characteristics known as the “learner profile”: inquiring, informed, sensible, well-integrated, open-minded, altruistic, well-balanced and reflective.
Florimont has been an authorised IB World School since September 2014.
The international track (bilingual French/English) is a four-year programme offering access to the best universities in Switzerland and worldwide, depending on the points received.
The programme is set out as follows:
3rd and 2nd grade are preparatory years offering an interdisciplinary approach to subject teaching and drawing on the best of the Swiss, French and English/American curricula.
1st grade and Terminale are dedicated to the Diploma Programme as laid down by the International Baccalaureate. There is a choice of 6 branches (3 at higher level and 3 at standard level), one from each of the following six categories: literature, modern foreign language, social science, science, mathematics and the arts (for which another subject can be substituted.)
The curriculum is completed by a common core (Theory of Knowledge, Extended Essay and Creativity, Activity and Service) encouraging artistic and sporting activities as well as more general tasks.
The approach to teaching and learning in the IB is positive and designed to promote self-confidence, as well as providing a sound structure through assessment against specific criteria known to the pupil, individual research and group work; the imaginative programme develops the skills of reflection that will be useful at university.