What is the FinBret exchange program?
FinBret is a school exchange program between the Académie de Rennes (France) and Finland. It allows French and Finnish high school students to experience linguistic, cultural, and academic immersion. Indeed, each student goes to school with his or her pen pal and lives with his or her family.
This individual exchange program is therefore based on reciprocity of reception in the families and allows students to establish privileged links with a young person of their age. Each Finnish student participating in the program is paired with a French student from the same class and stays in contact with him/her.
The program lasts three weeks: French students spend three weeks in Finland and, conversely, Finnish students spend three weeks in France.
When and for how long?
- For 3 weeks, from 30/09/2023 to 21/10/2023: the Finnish pupil spends his/her stay in the Académie de Rennes.
- For 3 weeks, from 12/11/2023 to 03/12/2023: the French student stays in Finland.
- To get to know France and its culture.
- To improve their French and experience the French education system up close.
- To discover the life of young French people.
- To make French friends.
Who can participate?
Students can participate if:
- They are entering class 10, 11, or 12 at the time of the exchange (16, 17, or 18 years old).
- They have a minimum level of B1 in English and A2 in French.
- They are open-minded, independent, and responsible.
- They have the agreement of their parents and the school.
- They have handed in the requested documents in time.
How much does it cost?
As this is an exchange between families, the students are provided with accommodation, food, and laundry by the host family, on a reciprocal basis.
The costs and organization of transport for the departing student are the responsibility of his/her own family.
We advise students to take some pocket money with them to enable them to do leisure activities with their pen pals and the host family. For information, a cinema ticket in France costs between 8 and 10 euros and a coffee 1.70 euros.
How to apply?
Fill in the pre-registration form which will allow us to identify your request and contact you.
The French Institute only communicates with the referent teachers and the school heads, except in cases of serious problems and major force. Families are therefore invited to contact their schools.
What do the student and his/her family agree to?
The pupil agree to:
- Attend school in France and to follow all the lessons of their correspondent.
- Follow the rhythm of life of the host family.
- Take care of their French pen pal during their stay in Finland.
The host family agree to:
- Receive the student in their home and provide for his/her needs during the stay.
- Be responsible for the student they are hosting.
Health and insurance
All French schools have an infirmary where any student who feels unwell can go. The school doctor will intervene if the student’s state of health requires it. In the case of hospitalization of minors, parental authorization for surgery will be required.
Before leaving for France, students must provide the French Institute of Finland with a copy of their travel insurance contract which must include the following guarantees:
- emergency medical and hospitalization expenses
- medical repatriation
- accident and death
- civil liability
This insurance must cover the entire period of the exchange.
Students may, if they wish, take out additional insurance (e.g. for luggage or personal effects).
Students should also apply for a European Health Insurance Card.
And how does it work in practice?
After being matched with their pen-friend, the student must:
- Contact their host family to organize their arrival.
- Book their plane ticket (the student’s family is responsible for purchasing the ticket). In the context of the health crisis, we recommend the purchase of exchangeable tickets).
- Arrange for insurance and provide the host family with personal health information.
- Packing and revising your French.
For more information, contact the cooperation attaché for French: firstname.lastname@example.org