Chavagnes International College 

Chavagnes International College



A Catholic boarding school for boys

Much Ado about Nothing, Chavagnes
Dear friends, 

The last few months have been full of excitement at Chavagnes as boys sit GCSE, A-level and Brevet examinations as well as preparing for our end of year cultural events.
The new term began, in the afterglow of Easter, with the observance of the traditional May Day festivities (medieval songs from the tower at dawn, followed by a healthy fried breakfChavagnes Scoutsast!) ...
Over the Pentecost weekend our scouts, and a few other pupils, participated in the Paris to Chartes pilgrilmage, walking the entire distance of over 100km on foot, in a quick march! The weather was fairly clement and they all had a great time. For more information on the Chavagnes Scouts, who have just returned from their summer camp, visit
Congratulations to our three candidates in the French National Brevet Diploma (end of Year 10) this year. All three boys passed, with one obtaining the "Mention Assez Bien".
GCSE and A-level results will be available in August.
In this newsletter we will be telling you about all of the exciting events over the last term as well as giving some news about staff changes and development for the future.

Bishop celebrates Mass for Chavagnes 

On Monday 20th June, Monseigneur Alain Castet came to celebrate Mass in thanksgiving for a successful school year. We were delighted to be honoured with his presence at a festive lunch afterwards.


In his homily Mgr Castet spoke of the continuity between the former 'petit séminaire' and our international college. He also said he was sure that our school would bear good spiritual fruit.


A video of parts of the Bishop's Mass, including the homily, is in preparation. It will appear on our youtube channel:

Chavagnes rugby

Two rugby victories

We were challenged, on 21st June, for the second time this year, to play two teams from the local Collège Ste Marie, 5ème (Year 8) at rugby 7s. Our boys, playing two matches one after the other, came out on top, winning both fixtures comfortably. Well done, lads. Another sporting highlight on 29th June was an Interhouse soccer tournament, whose winners (Rochejacquelein) played the Masters ... and lost. 

Sports Day

Chavagnes water galaThis year's Sports Day (Thursday 30th June) featured the traditional short and long distance running, including the Inter House Relay race, as well as the long jump and an afternoon of swimming races. Several records were broken. The clear winners were Rochejacquelein House.

Much Ado about Nothing


After a successful year of debates, recitations and plays our boys finished the year in style with an imaginative and visually stunning performance of Shakespeare's Much Ado about Nothing, directed by Mr Tyldesley. Performed in three different locations in the college grounds, the summer mood, the clear diction,  enthusiasm and obvious talent of the young actors combined to make one of our most memorable theatrical experiences yet. Photos of the production are online. A video is in preparation.

Chavagnes summer Ball 2011 Summer Ball
This year we enjoyed  an evening of dancing and fellowship again, on Friday 1st July, under the stars at the back of the College, with the heady scent of lime blossom and the sense of triumph at completing another year of the Chavagnes adventure: our ninth. Guests included some former pupils and families of existing ones.

Chavagnes Spanish workersSpanish helpers ...
Thanks to 16 young friends from Spain, together with their teachers and a priest we are giving the College a new look. Stonework is being restored, new rooms brought into use and old ones redecorated. The hardworking team has come for a 2-week work camp. We are happy also to welcome back Chavagnes alumni Matthias and Dominic Lloyd who are giving us a hand with the project.


Our young helpers are planning to redecorate the dormitories and classrooms and also to repaint windows, metalwork and doors around the College.


Thanks, boys! Great work ...

Welcome to new staff
We are delighted to announce the appointment of Mr Gareth Usher as Head of Science at Chavagnes from September 2011.


Mr Usher (left), a Welshman, comes to us with many years experience of science teaching and was until recently Head of Science at The American Private School of Paphos, Cyprus. Mr Usher also coaches rugby and is a keen astronomer. He will be teaching all examination classes for Chemistry, Physics and Biology in Year 11 (Seconde) in addition to A-level Chemistry and Biology. He will also take overall responsibility for the delivery of Science teaching in the College. Dr Conlon will continue to teach Physics A-level. Other teachers of science at the lower end of the age range will be Mr Hayes, Mr Leach and Mr Francis. Mr Leach and Mr Francis are new teachers for September 2011.


Our new chaplain for September is a young priest of the Diocese of Clifton. Father Rowe is a keen walker as well as an established teacher and writer. He has published several books on catechetical and theological topics and was until recently on the teaching staff of the University of Bristol. He will be teaching Religious Studies throughout the College.



Mr Michael Leach (right), currently a Head of Department in an international school in Spain is to join us as Head of Sport and teacher of Biology and Spanish.  


Mr FrancisMr Philip Francis (left) is joining us a teacher of Mathematics and Physics to replace Mr Bowen to whom we bid a fond farewell this summer.


We also welcome Mr Joseph Aspinall as teacher of English as a foreign language.


In the French department Mr Christophe Kocsan will now be joined by Mr Didier Chaillou in the provision of French lessons for our French pupils. Both are experienced teachers in the French education system. We also continue to enjoy the help of Sister Françoise Chartier who will be providing tutoring (soutien scolaire) for the younger French boys next year. An additional part-time appointment for French will be announced shortly.


For our full staff list, visit:


The new academic year begins for us on the evening of Sunday 4th September. It will be the beginning of our College's tenth year. Our calendar is available online and is regulary updated with new details of events at the College.
This year we encourage parents to consult our curriculum site which is being added to all the time. It explains the rationale behind the teaching of all the subjects at Chavagnes as well as providing extensive details of the syllabus. We are currently adding schemes of work for all classes and subjects so that parents will have an idea of what their sons are studying across the College. This process should be finished by the end of July.
In September we will also give details of a new information management system that will allow parents to track their son's marks and will help families of day boys to assist their sons in keeping up to date with homework and revision for tests and exams.
So, some new faces, new systems and plenty of new challenges, no doubt, for the school year that lies ahead. We will need your continuing help and support to make our tenth year at Chavagnes the best yet.
God bless you. Please continue to remember us in your prayers. I wish you all a restful summer holiday.


Ferdi McDermott
Chavagnes International College
+33 (0)2 51 42 39 82

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