Caption: Canala College students in New Caledonia before their trip to Fiji
By ASHTOSH SINGH
Seventeen French Exchange Students from Canala College in the Northern Province of New Caledonia were given a traditional Fijian welcome by their host school, Suva Grammar, yesterdat.
In his welcome speech Ambassador Gilles Montagnier said: “I am very happy to be here today to welcome yet another group of French speaking students from the region to Fiji, and more importantly to Suva Grammar School. This exchange program with Suva Grammar has existed and run successfully for over 15 years now.”
“The French Embassy and the Alliance Française de Suva continues to advocate for linguistic integration in Fiji and the Pacific in order to pave the way for more comprehensive exchanges between the English and French speaking countries of the region,” he added.
The seventeen students are accompanied by their English teacher, Ms. Isabelle Payat, and they are scheduled to make several educational and recreational visits around Fiji.
During their visit the students will spend a few nights with local host families as well.
As stated by Ms Payat: “Beyond the linguistic experience, these cultural exchanges also give the opportunity to SGS students to discover our school, village and country.”
“The goals of this sister school program is to encourage and promote the teaching of
French in Fiji and English in New Caledonia, to deepen understanding and respect of each other’s culture and to develop ties of friendship through regular communication.”
Meanwhile, the group will return to New Caledonia on Saturday 21st September.