The French American International School (FAIS) is a preschool through grade eight independent school with an internationally-focused curriculum. The Lower School accepts students from 2.5 years old and is a French immersion program, complemented with the study of English. The Middle School offers an inspiring, international curriculum designed for students with no foreign language experience, as well as students continuing in immersion programs in French, German, Spanish, and Mandarin.
FAIS has two academic divisions. The French American Lower School is the primary school for students in preschool through fifth grade. The Gilkey International Middle School provides an international, multilingual program for sixth through eighth grades.
As the conceptual age of the 21st century enters its second decade, the research is clear: Students who are well prepared for the global economy of tomorrow must have a solid grounding in the traditional disciplines, be able to work in diverse groups, communicate in more than one language, and appreciate the diversity of world cultures. FAIS is committed to preparing children to successfully participate in a world without boundaries and guiding them on the important journey of growth and discovery.
FAIS students take part in a strong academic program that allows each student to blossom according to his or her strengths. They develop a firm foundation in the traditional disciplines and a deep knowledge of at least one other language and culture. As curious, creative, and critical thinkers, they consistently perform above their French and U.S. peers in standardized tests, and move on to enroll in a number of academically challenging high schools and eventually universities in the Portland area and beyond. FAIS students are confident learners who understand the impact of global interactions and the changing world, are beginning to develop true cultural competency, and have a deep commitment to understanding the world and making it a better place for all.
Founded in 1979, FAIS is a leader in the Portland metropolitan area in preparing young people for the global world of the 21st century. FAIS is one of the larger independent schools in the Portland metropolitan area, and one of forty French schools in the United States and 450 schools worldwide accredited by the French Ministry of National Education.
With an enrollment of nearly 550 students from preschool through grade eight, FAIS is committed to academic excellence as the premier provider of international foreign language immersion education. Employing the rich resources of an internationally recognized curriculum, the rigorous multilingual programs at FAIS stimulate intellectual curiosity, encourage independent thinking, foster individual responsibility, and help each student realize his or her full potential.
Surrounded by woods and wetlands, the 14-acre campus boasts a new Center for the Arts, a well-equipped library and multicultural center, cutting-edge science and computer labs, two gymnasiums, a music center, two art studios, a large commons area, a nature trail and outdoor classrooms, a playground with covered play structures, and a covered play area for outdoor sports.
FAIS is the only independent school in the Portland area that is fully accredited by both the French Ministry of National Education and the Northwest Association of Independent Schools (NWAIS). The School is registered with the Child Care Division of the State of Oregon, and is a member of the Oregon Federation of Independent Schools, the National Association of Independent Schools, the Association of French Schools in the Americas, Agence pour l’Enseignement Français à l’Etranger (AEFE), and Mission Laïque Française (MLF).