St. Mary’s College Students Excel in French


French competency and comprehension continues to improve for students taking French at St. Mary’s College.  The majority of the Huron-Superior Catholic District School Board (HSCDSB) French as a Second Language (FSL) students who participated in the DELF (Diplôme d’Études en Langue Française) exam succeeded at one of three levels offered.

This year, the Board’s success rate rose one-percent to 88% for thirty-two participants.

“This is a great result for our students as it is proof that they are becoming more confident, successful and proficient in French.  It is also an affirmation that our French teachers are doing a great job in the classroom,” said HSCDSB French Language Consultant, Ann Marie Santoro.

The Board instituted the DELF exam four years ago to give students in French Immersion and Core French programs the opportunity to determine how proficient they are in the language. Proficiency in the language is rated at three levels — A2, B1, and B2 – with B2 being the highest level of proficiency tested. The number of HSCDSB students taking the B2 exam almost tripled from 2016.  There was a slight increase in students who challenged the B1 exam, while participation in the A2 exam dropped by over two-thirds.

“We are happy to give our students this opportunity to see where they stand when it comes to learning Canada’s second official language.  The results we’ve seen are a testament to how our French language programs are enhancing student achievement,” said HSCDSB Director of Education, John Stadnyk.

The DELF exam, which can last from two to three hours, includes oral interviews and written work.  Each of the four components tested are regarded as equally important, a format designed to ensure a student is truly fluent in French.

A successful challenge of the DELF exam allows for each candidate to receive a diploma from the French Ministry of Education, recognizing students’ international level of proficiency in French.