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Welcome from the Head of School

Yvan Tabellion.JPG

"I believe in a welcoming environment for our students, powered by our programs and our dedicated faculty and staff."

Yvan Tabellion, Head of School

Dear Friends of FISW,
The start of the 2022-23 school year is just days away. My name is Yvan Tabellion, and I am thrilled to introduce myself as FISW's new Head of School. It is an honor to be selected by the Board of Trustees. It is a privilege to lead such an amazing school towards its new chapter, as we will soon become the owners of the building we have called home for nearly 25 years. 
Coming back to FISW is, for me and my family, a return to our roots. My wife, Laura, and I met in Seattle through former FISW colleagues, and this is where our daughter, Margaux, was born. This school year will be my 26th in education and 11 of them were spent at FISW. After three years as the Director of the Primary School at Rochambeau in Washington, DC, I am excited to be back at FISW – a school that is near and dear to my heart. 
The First Weeks 
My first few weeks at FISW will be dedicated to getting to know you and our community. I am excited to meet you and your children, reconnecting with familiar faces and beginning to develop new relationships. Most of all, I look forward to watching our students grow and thrive in our school community where they feel accepted, encouraged, and supported. 
I am committed to FISW’s mission. I believe in a welcoming environment for our students, powered by our programs (character education, Green Schools, Diversity Day, among many others) and our dedicated faculty and staff. This year, we will bring back activities and programs that will contribute to developing our students’ bilingualism, curiosity, critical thinking and well-being. They will have the opportunity to: 

  • Benefit from bilingual co-teaching and bilingual projects at every grade level. 

  • Participate in numerous science and art related field trips 

  • Reconnect and develop new friendships with after school enrichment classes and after school care 

  • Go to the South Bellevue Community gym, or sailing for the older students 

As we move through this school year together, please know that my door is open, and I look forward to many productive conversations. I will ask questions to better understand areas of strength and opportunities for development. I come with an open mind, welcome your ideas and perspectives, and always strive to approach conversations with compassion and understanding. 
The School's Growth 
The school has changed and grown since its early days. I want to acknowledge Brian Ball and George Spix, the current owners of the building and co-founders of the school, for their dedication and their continuous support of FISW. I want to express my gratitude to Veronique Dussud, who founded FISW in 1999, and Barbara Greiner, who continued its growth these past five years. I am lucky to have worked with and learned from them, and I take pride in continuing the work they began. 
What lies ahead of us is exciting and thrilling. Purchasing our building is a big step forward, which will allow us to make our home our own as we grow and build equity. It requires the support and commitment of our community and, later in the fall, we will launch FISW’s Capital Campaign to support the purchase. 
Bienvenue à FISW 
This school year will be one of learning, reconnecting, and fun. Every year is different but “Welcome” or “Welcome back” are always the usual greetings. This year though, on behalf of the faculty, staff, and myself, I want to say: “Welcome Home.” 
Yvan Tabellion
Head of School
French Immersion School of Washington

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