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Lennen Bilingual School France 2 - 14
Lennen Bilingual School
150 pupils, ages 6-11 | Mixed | Day

Primary School

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Our View

Lennen Bilingual School (LBS) is a real one-off. Founded by expat American Patricia Lennen while she was working as a teacher in Paris in the 1960s, it addresses the need for a school that offers a truly bilingual education within the iconic surroundings of the 7th arrondissement. Still one of a kind in the French capital, it combines US methodologies with a full-immersion curriculum taught in both French and English across all subjects.


Having started in the American Church of Paris – where the toddlers and nursery class for ages two to four is still based – the school has since grown to include two beautiful townhouses in the smart, residential seventh arrondissement, cheek by jowl with the Eiffel Tower, the Musée d’Orsay and Les Invalides. As is typical in Paris, outside space is at a premium and the only real place for pupils to let off steam is a small courtyard, but the school more than makes the most of nearby facilities for sports. The primary and middle- school townhouses have dedicated assembly rooms and music classrooms; the latter also has a new science lab.


Patricia’s daughter Michelle Lennen took over the reins from her mother in the 1990s and since then has significantly expanded the school – first the primary, now the middle school. Michelle Deshayes is in charge of the primary school. Crucially, all staff are all bilingual, international – and incredibly warm and friendly.


Children can join at any time but bear in mind that this is still a small school, with only 250 places (about 60 in pre-school, 165 in primary across Grades 1 to 5, and 35 in middle). The lower grades each have two classes.

The enrolment process is very straightforward: a school visit, followed by an online form and application fee. Applications for primary and middle school must provide potential pupils’ most recent school reports, as well as a letter of recommendation by a current teacher and two writing samples.


Each class has two teachers (one French-speaking, the other English-speaking) and is a total immersion to ensure that pupils fully understand every subject in both languages. In primary school, half the day is taught in English and the other half in French, integrating the French Nationale programme and the American core curriculum. Classes focus on an annual theme that threads through each subject, with field trips that add to the diversified learning approach. Thanks to small class sizes, language support is on tap and teachers can deploy learning techniques that work for every child in the pursuit of the academic excellence that forms one of the school’s central pillars. Classrooms are new and airy, and designed to open out into each other to create larger learning spaces. 

SEN support is provided in class following discussions between parents and teachers and if an area is identified where a child needs help. External support can also be arranged if necessary. While some bilingual schools require minimum levels of language ability, LBS trusts in its own expertise to bring all pupils up to speed – some even join with very little French or English and leave as trilingual teens with the world at their feet. EAL (English as a Second Language) and FSL (French as a Second Language) support are very much part and parcel of the offering if required.


As you might expect from a school with a knockout location in the heart of Paris, outside space is scarce, so sporting activities take place off site. Football, basketball and swimming for example, are held at the Racing Club (which also has indoor tennis courts), and each pupil takes part in a minimum of 90 minutes of sport every week, taught by one of three specialist sports teachers.

Drama takes place in the larger classrooms, but bigger events are held at the theatre in the American Church. Primary pupils put on a non-secular holiday show in the winter, to which parents are invited. The whole school also stages a spring dance show – this year the theme was the Olympic Games and saw each class really making the most of the cultural diversity afforded by the theme, learning and performing a dance from the country they chose.

The bright art studio positioned on the top floor of one of the townhouses boasts fabulous views of the city rooftops and is so inspiring it should bring out the inner artist in every child.

After-school extracurricular clubs provide additional breadth to the curriculum but are an optional (and chargeable) extra, run for the most part by specialist external providers. Pupils can try their hand at anything from comic-book design to yoga and dance, satisfying passions or igniting new ones.

School community

Respect and diversity are central tenets at LBS: the community is half French and half expat, with about 15 nationalities represented and nearly 20 languages spoken. Parents all appreciate the benefits of a bilingual education and new families are made very welcome – in fact, the school often pairs a new family with an existing one from the same country to help them settle in. Every school year begins with a whole-school get-together, and parental class reps are always on hand to offer an additional layer of support.

And finally....

LBS really is unique: the only fully bilingual immersion school in Paris, offering youngsters the chance to learn in a forward-thinking environment where collaboration is key and curiosity and personal development are the goals – language is merely the pathway. Limited outside space may make it a less natural choice for more boisterous types but, for established city dwellers, the opportunity for a bilingual education is compensation enough.


Lennen Bilingual School gallery image
Lennen Bilingual School gallery image
Lennen Bilingual School gallery image
  • Admissions

    The application process takes place completely online through the school's OpenApply portal. As an international school they choose to function on a rolling admissions basis to accommodate families who might move during an ongoing school year. If the desired class has availability, the child will be considered for admission regardless of the time of year.
  • Languages and bilingual streams


    Bilingual stream - English/French
  • Sports

  • Fees

    Day fees per annum
    From 17,300.00 Euro to 18,200.00 Euro

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11 Avenue de Villars, Paris, 75007

+ 33 1 44 42 99 00



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