Last week I had to go to my required "integration" class in Limoges. I had to sign a 1 year contract stating that I would take the French lessons required, participate in a civil service class, and a civic duty class within that timeframe.
Have any other expats gone through this process?
I was a bit overwhelmed and completely bombed my written French test in Limoges. My French language orientation took place 3 days later in Tulle and the lady I met with is placing me in a year long program in order for me to achieve my French language "diploma." My current level is such that I am required to take 10.5 hours of French lessons per WEEK for the next 15 weeks. In December (when I am huge and pregnant) I will take my first exam tracking my progress. If it is satisfactory, I will receive my offical "Carte de Sejour" which will allow me to live and work in France legally and permanently if that is what we decide to do.
Although this is pretty intense, I think it is really GOOD for the country and for the immigrants. It forces us to join society and sets us up for success and happiness. It also ensures that the French language and culture are kept in tact.
I start class TODAY! WOW that was quick! The good news is that the government is paying, my class is in Egletons so I can come home for an hour and 1/2 at lunch, and I should be able to fully function in French society by this time, next year. I think overall this is going to be SO GOOD for me! I have had to be unusually codependent on Logan this year as far as running errands, filling out paperwork, etc. so I think this will be vital to my happiness over here. PLUS, Logan is going to speak in only French to Baby Stella and I need to be caught up to speed ASAP so I know what Dad is saying behind my back :) Although overwhelming, I think this is just the push I needed in order to learn the language quickly. But I have to be honest... I am terrified about going back to school. Logan told me most likely I will be in class with a bunch of Turkish ladies and between Arab and English we will be FORCED to speak in French.
Will let you all know how it goes! This has been a goal of mine for a few years now... lets make this happen!