School children lined up

Moving to France with your children and unsure which class your child should attend? Welcome to our guide to French school classes and grades.

Trying to determine which school grade your child should attend in their new school system is often one of the most challenging aspects of moving into a foreign school system. France, the UK and the US all have their own school grade structures.

Here is a list of school grade equivalents in France vs. the UK and vs. the US for your reference. Please keep in mind though that each child has its own ability and capacity, and a mere school grade equivalent is not always the best deciding factor in where a child will best be suited.

Age France UK USA
3 Maternelle Petite Nursery Nursery
4 Maternelle Moyenne Reception Pre-K
5 Maternelle Grande Year 1 Kindergarten
6 C.P. Year 2 1st Grade
7 C.E. 1 Year 3 2nd Grade
8 C.E. 2 Year 4 3rd Grade
9 C.M. 1 Year 5 4th Grade
10 C.M. 2 Year 6 5th Grade
11 6ème Year 7 6th Grade
12 5ème Year 8 7th Grade
13 4ème Year 9 8th Grade
14 3ème Year 10 9th Grade
15 2ème Year 11 10th Grade
16 1ère Year 12 11th Grade
17 Terminale Year 13 12th Grade


See also: an introduction to the French state education system

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