Early French Immersion

West Vancouver Schools offers both Early and Late French Immersion programs.

Enrollment in Early French Immersion generally occurs at the Kindergarten level, although students may enter the program at the Grade 1 level until December, space permitting.

Early French Immersion (EFI) programs are available at both École Cedardale and École Pauline Johnson.

École Cedardale is an International Baccalaureate (IB) school, offering the French Immersion Primary Years Programme (PYP). There is an associated fee with the IB PYP programme. Learn more about the IB PYP Programme at Ecole Cedardale.

Applicants who wish to enroll in French Immersion are free to choose either one or both of the French Immersion schools. However, it is important to understand that if only one of the French Immersion schools is selected, the application will be considered for spaces at that school only. If you wish to be considered for placement at BOTH French Immersion schools, you must select both schools as two of your three prioritized school choices.

Due to the popularity of these programs of choice, applications for admission to EFI and EFI IB PYP are subject to a lottery process. Two separate lotteries will be held in early December to determine placement offers.

A student may be included in both lotteries, provided both schools are selected as choices on the online application and provided that all required documentation is submitted to the first choice school before the close of the lottery period.

Late French Immersion begins at Grade 6 and is offered at École Pauline Johnson Elementary. There is no Late French Immersion at Ecole Cedardale.

Admissions / Registration 2020 – 2021 – click here

How to Apply for Early French Immersion 2020 – 2021

Kindergarten Admissions

Children enter Kindergarten in September of the calendar year in which they turn five years of age.

STEP 1 – Submit an online registration form

  • Applications for children born in the year 2015 who will enter Kindergarten in September 2020 will be available online BEGINNING AT 8 a.m. ON TUESDAY, OCTOBER 15th, 2019 AND CONTINUING UNTIL 3 p.m. ON MONDAY DECEMBER 2nd, 2019. Any applications received after that time will be accepted, but will not be included in the lottery process and will be handled according to the Student Regulation Guidelines.
  • All applications for student registration must be submitted online – CLICK HERE
  • Only those online applications where all supporting documentation has been received by the lottery deadline will be included from the lottery. No exceptions will be made.

STEP 2 – Submit ORIGINALS of required documentation in person to your first choice school (École Cedardale or École Pauline Johnson) per the instructions on the Admissions page of the individual school websites

All required student documentation must be provided to your FIRST CHOICE school following submission of your online registration form.

Please see the admissions area of the school sites to determine when to submit your documents:
École Cedardale
École Pauline-Johnson

École Cedardale
595 Burley Drive
West Vancouver, BC
Tel: (604) 981-1390


École Pauline Johnson
1150 22nd Street
West Vancouver, BC
Tel: (604) 981-1225

Due to the strong demand for these programs of choice, West Vancouver Schools will conduct two separate lotteries to identify those children who will be registered for French Immersion Kindergarten for the 2019 – 2020 school year at either École Cedardale or École Pauline Johnson.

The registration will follow Ministry guidelines and Board policy.

NB. Only those applications that have all required documentation as of 3:00 pm on December 2, 2019 will be included in the lottery.

The 2020 – 2021 EFI and EFI PYP Lotteries will be held on Friday, December 6, 2019 at the School Board Office.

Grade 1 – 7 Early French Immersion Admission / Registration:

Applications to register for grades 1 – 7 Early French Immersion are handled on a first-come, first-served basis according to the Student Registration Guidelines.

  • Applications for registration for grade 1-7 students living IN the West Vancouver Schools catchment area (West Vancouver, Lions Bay, or Bowen Island) may be submitted online, starting at 8 a.m. on Tuesday, October 15, 2019.
  • Applications for registration for grade 1 – 7 students living OUTSIDE West Vancouver may be submitted online, starting at 8 a.m. on Tuesday, January 15, 2020.
  • Only those applications where all supporting documentation has been submitted will be placed on the wait-list.
  • Placement occurs in the late spring, space permitting

PLEASE NOTE: Only students in grades 2 – 7 currently attending an Early French Immersion (EFI) program are eligible to apply for Early French Immersion in West Vancouver.

Grade 1 students not currently in EFI may apply, but due to the nature of the EFI environment and the cognitive academic language demands of the programs, students are only eligible to be placed before the Winter Break of their grade 1 year.

Late French Immersion (LFI) is available at École Pauline Johnson, beginning in grade 6.


What documentation is required for Kindergarten application?

All online applications require that ORIGINALS of all documents be submitted to the office of your first choice school, according to the directions on the school websites.

Please click here for a list of required documents.


EFI and EFI PYP Kindergarten Placement Lotteries

Lotteries to determine placement in Early French Immersion Kindergarten at École Cedardale and École Pauline Johnson for September 2020 entry will be held at the West Vancouver School Board Office.

The lotteries for September 2020 Kindergarten placement will take place on Friday, December 6, 2019 and all applicants will be advised by email of their lottery placement before schools close for the holidays on December 20, 2019.

All complete applications submitted between Tuesday, October 15 – Monday, December 2, 2019 will be included in the lottery. Students will be included in both lotteries, provided that both schools are listed as prioritized choices on the online application.

Applicants will be notified of the results via email, beginning with in-district applicants, in the order in which they were drawn, as soon as possible after the conclusion of the lotteries. As outlined in Board Administrative Procedure 300 7.1, parents will be given 24 hours to make the decision to accept a position offered.

Registration will follow Ministry guidelines and Board policy.

What is Early French Immersion?

The Early French Immersion program is an intensive program designed for students wishing to acquire French as a second/third language. A second/third language is built on a strong foundation of the child’s first language which in our context is usually English. The program is designed to immerse students in the French language in a school environment.

French is acquired through using French as a means of communication in the school environment as well as learning French through academic content. Students progress together developing their French language skills over time as they move through their elementary and secondary school years. Therefore, there are only two entry points for students who are interested in a French Immersion experience: Kindergarten and Grade 1. Students transferring into Immersion after December of Grade 1 must be transferring from another French Immersion school or French language program where the majority of the program is delivered in French.

Some students may have acquired a level of proficiency through other means (e.g. spending time abroad in a French speaking region, a French speaking parent, intensive tutoring, etc.). In these situations, in order for a student to be admitted into our program, the school would need to conduct an evaluation to determine the student’s level of French language proficiency (oral and written). If the evaluation indicates that the student would be able to function at or close to grade level and the family is prepared to provide some support outside of school, then it may be possible for the student to be admitted into the program.

The decision as to whether the student’s level of proficiency is adequate to be admitted into the program is made by the principal in consultation with staff. Parents should also take into consideration their child’s ‘readiness’ for this kind of a transfer as it requires a high level of motivation on the part of the student and a fairly high level of tolerance to stress and other emotional factors. The school’s decision will be made on a case-by-case basis which will depend upon the student’s profile and the circumstances surrounding the request.

Late French Immersion

We also offer a Late French Immersion (LFI) program at École Pauline Johnson that is designed for students wishing to have an immersion experience who have not attended the Early Immersion program. The entry for this program is Grade 6 and continues at the secondary school level. For information about LFI, please contact the principal of École Pauline Johnson at (604) 981-1225.