Learning French is a challenge, but vital

Rosie Hawes with son Cameron and husband Phil
Rosie and Phil Hawes arrived in France three years ago with son Cameron and when Rosie started online French lessons to get a proper qualification she found the work involved for the grade she wanted was harder than expected

Learning French can be one of the biggest challenges related to a move to France but there are lots of ways of taking lessons – at local clubs, with a private teacher, online or with one of the many recognised bodies like the Alliance Française and online CNED.

There are also officially recognised exams which can be useful – even vital – for proving your proficiency when you look for work.

What you choose depends on your aim, your budget and the amount of time you can devote but there should be something for everyone.

In some cases, you can get financial assistance either, in theory, from the training fund every employee and self-employed person pays into or from Pôle Emploi if it can be shown that it will help you find work.

If a teacher comes to your home to give you lessons in French you can earn tax credits equal to 50% of what you pay them a year. This comes under emploi à domicile rules and you will need proof that they are registered to be employed, for example from CESU, the organisation which governs the employment of people in the home.

If you are looking for formal, structured lessons with or without a diploma at the end there is a list of government approved teaching centres which have earned the label Qualité Français Langue Etrangère (qualitefle.fr/en).

These include ...

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