On Freyjabear's recommendation, we used the kennels for our Japanese Akita when we went back to the UK for Christmas.
He appeared extremely well fed, (which pleased my husband, who had put him into a kennels in the UK for almost double the price we paid here in France, and the poor thing looked half-starved when collected!).
The guy who runs the place was very pleasant (although if you don't have fluent French, take a dictionary and all your paperwork when you go on a visit, so that if you do decided to put your dog in the kennels, you can do all the paperwork there and then).
They do tend to get very booked up at certain times of the year (especially August) so you really do have to book in advance. I have also been told there is a Kennels just outside Cerizay (between Cerizay and St Mesmin).
"Had I been forced to the bac I would have failed miserably, been denied a place on a language-based degree course and ended up being a plumber"
I know this is sort of changing the subject - but if you get the chance, take a look at this article on the Guardian online pages - you might find it interesting !
and this one by a freelance writer.
and of course, there is nothing in the manuals to say women can't do the job just as well as men !!
As I read it, TU was questioning everything we had done rather right down to getting the kids extra lessons at school ! I did not intend this post to start a slanging match, But as the general consensus is that TU was offering me advice, then I apologise.
I just wanted to make a point that, outside of the School system, maybe there was another alternative for those of us with children of a slightly less integratable age.
Obviously I would be as upset as the next person if and when my children fly the nest to either further their educations or careers, it will be in the full knowledge that wherever we are, is home. When living in the UK there is not guarantee that the University they would attend would be on the doorstep.
On another note, it has been brought to my attention that the Lycee near to us is (if it hasn't already begun) starting an English Bac - apparently the Directeur is aware of the vast number of bilingual children in the area. Maybe there is some hope for us.
Please give some of us 'newies' a break - I obviously bow to your longevity here in France and your knowledge, but surely sharing it would be better than sneering and rubbing your hands together in glee as you suppose another of us 'bites the dust'
These forums have been up and running for a while now, and I read plenty of them before we moved over. I had many sleepless nights as to whether or not we were doing the right thing, but we made our decision, and whether or not we go home in the 5 years (a statistic I read on one or other of these sites) we would like to be able to say that we gave it our best shot.
I get the distinct impression you think I am doing my utmost to make my children's life has hard as possible. Not so. We were under no illusions that there would be difficulties in them settling and doing well at school - therefore we did think up a contingency plan if things didn't work out.
Prior to the 'ad' on this forum. I had already found a teacher who lives here in France and in the next town to us and who is perfectly qualified (we did our checks) to put the kids through their GCSE's and AS exams. We discussed at length what would be best for the children and obviously the French system was not going to work for them.
My two are quite happy at the prospect of returning to the UK, be it now or in the next few years. As far as the cost of their further education is concerned, I think that is a matter for us and not you.
If the children were going to be educated in the French system, then there would have been a problem in taking them out of it, however, they are going to be taught privately outside the french educational system and therefore should not be a problem.
To answer your question on the help (or extra work as you put it) which they are currently receiving- the lady in question is a (French) teaching assistant with the English department at the school and was recommended by the Directeur himself during our first meeting, I believe that was confirmation enough of the school's blessing.
She has been teaching them the basics and helping with homework questions and any other queries they may have during that weeks work and checking their work. We meet often for her to give me updates. As I said in my original post, the work is done during periods which they do not have any lessons and is therefore, not exactly interfering with any of their work or giving any more to do.
You are right in my not having a full understanding of the French Education system nor do I profess to, but then i kind of get the impression that I am not alone in that - and that includes some of you who have been here a long time. But I think if I had any doubts about removing them from the French system, these were dispelled when I met an English girl who has been here since the age of 13 (now in her late 20's), who said that as far as she was concerned, the BAC wasn't worth the paper it was written on.
Whilst I only glanced at the 'ad' that was originally put on the forum, if they are teaching GCSE's what possible french body would they be registered with? I presume they are offering a British service to English speaking Nationals, and therefore would have English teaching credentials which can be checked.
Try as I might to stay away from the Education forum to prevent myself from getting too depressed - I was interested to spot an offer to provide GSCE education here in France that for once, was in my area! - but like the elusive Scarlet Pimpernel it seems to have disappeared.
Okay, so it was an advert and you guy's don't approve of soliciting - but I do think it was worth a discussion.
Many of us who come over here with our children, have not done so on a whim, nor, as some of you "long termers" seem to think, have we arrived wearing rose coloured glasses. It has been a long planned, long thought out (and in some cases painful) decision to quit old blighty, ones friends and family and set up here.
We didn't buy but decided to rent first (just in case). We put money aside for extra lessons for the children and we are paying, (on top of school fees as they currently attend a Private Catholic school), for an extra 4 hours a week tuition for the children at the princely sum of 20 euros an hour. I hasten to add that the school has been great in letting the woman who gives these lessons, do so on school premises during their 'etude' hour.
However, we are fully aware, as are the teaching staff, that our children may get into the Lycee but the chances of them going beyond is nonexistent.
Decisions, decisions. As the nearest International school is miles away and boarding fees for two children are horrendous, we have to make the choice now to all return to the UK, or just the children, or take them out of school and put them independently through their GCSE's. I prefer this course as it means, they get to continue the educational path they want, and we get to stay in France.
Another plus, as I see it, they will be able to take GCSE French and possibly pass with a better mark because they are using it on a daily basis !
And before I hear the "but you will be isolating them from their peers" - there is nothing to say that they can't continue to go to their football training, ballet classes, and youth clubs so they will still be mixing with their school friends, but also get the qualifications they want to go on to further education in the UK.
I know I'm not alone in going this route, I have spoken to and corresponded with several other parents who, despite their disappointment at having to make the change, are all considering the same move (a couple of already have).
Have you tried Transmanche ferries which travel out of Newhaven to Dieppe? They are more of a transport ferry than passenger, and the more you travel with them, the better discount you get. My Husband has been paying around £60 for a 3-4 day return and is due for a reduction again soon.
You can also get a cabin on board for about a tenner apparently. We used them to go back to the UK for Christmas - the beds were clean and and the rooms (in comparison with Brittany ferries) were huge. If you don't mind the non-plush surroundings - give em a go i say !
Got my 14 and 12 year old into school without anyone asking to see their vaccine records - however, when i tried to get my 2 year old into the local nursery/creche, I was told that he had to have had his BCG before he could attend.
Went to my Doctor who said that the Medical profession wasn't that bothered about the BCG anymore, but if I wanted to get the vaccine for my 12 and 2 year old, he would administer it. Unfortunately, there appears to be something of a delay in the making of it and the local pharmacies are having difficulty getting hold of it. Of course my 12 year old is unaffected by this as he is already in school, but my 2 year old is very put out as he is desperate to go to school (as he calls it) and make some friends !
Jooles replied to felv's topic in West (Bretagne, Pays de la Loire, Poitou-Charente)
There are loads of us secreted around the Vendee - you will bump into us in the supermarkets, wandering around studiously studying the labels etc... Queueing at the post office is where I seem to bump into people !
We live just outside Pouzauges and we love the area (it's very reminiscent of Buckinghamshire where I grew up and lived until fairly recently).
The people are (contrary to the opinions of the French from other regions) warm and friendly and have great sense of humour. We have been made to feel very welcome, and the other day when I got a flat tyre, found my neighbour in the driveway changing it for me !! Without being asked and after his wife had already offered and taken my kids to school for me. (my husband is currently working in the UK).
Welcome to the Vendee !
[quote]Do you need to be local (I assume to yourselves) as, if you are e.g. driving to a Channel Port that which might then allow you to use a kennel along your drive (if you can take your dog in the car wit...[/quote]
I was looking for somewhere local based on the fact that it would be far less traumatic for our dog to have a short journey before being left, rather than a long one and then be left.... I tried various terms looking on the internet, Chenil, Pension etc... but luckily the forum seems to have come up trumps as the kennels which have been recommended are only a short drive from us - but thank you for your suggestions.
We have to go back to the UK for Christmas, but unfortunately, our poor pooch is unable to come with us - so I am looking for a boarding kennels in the Vendee (preferably somewhere between Pouzauges, Chantonnay and Les Herbiers) - although I know it is a long shot. Am planning to visit the Vets today to ask them, but thought I would l check here, just in case anyone knew of one.
Jooles replied to ChezShells's topic in West (Bretagne, Pays de la Loire, Poitou-Charente)Le Puy Morin - small village between Montournais and Pouzauges (85). Beautiful countryside - just like Buckinghamshire used to be !!
Jooles replied to Jooles's topic in West (Bretagne, Pays de la Loire, Poitou-Charente)
We recently moved to the Vendee (july 2004 3 miles outside Pouzauges) and my 14 year old daughter and 12 year old son, entered the French Education system in September.
I may be clutching at straws, but are there any other kids, in the same position, who may be willing to either correspond via email/letter or even meet up with my children to discuss their fears/ triumphs etc.... At present, they are the only English kids in the school and would really like someone else to talk to who understands completely what they are going through.
I too could do with someone who would be willing to share advice/woes or just needs a little bolstering when dealing with teenagers in angst !