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October 27, 2023

Weekly Letter from Jean-Yves - Why We Play

Yesterday, I was John Travolta in Pulp Fiction. I danced – with the confidence that comes with having long hair and being married to Andria / Uma Thurman – amidst manga pirates, cowboys, zombies, Kens, Barbies, Cruellas, witches, and many others. I don’t know what the desire to dress up occasionally says about grown-ups – our psychologist, Stéphanie, is better placed than me to comment on the phenomenon – but I do know that children do it all the time. As it says in the French Ministry of Education’s curriculum documents, children love costumes.

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September 15, 2023

Weekly Letter from Jean-Yves - Bright Futures

A quick glance at my agenda this week confirms my suspicions – The École is well and truly back! The languid days of August at school, when the hours stretched out endlessly, uninterrupted, and silent, are a distant memory. And happily so! It’s a delight to be back in the swing of things – even if the alarm going off at 5:30 a.m. in the morning feels a little like a poke in the eye.

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April 28, 2023

Weekly Letter from Jean-Yves - The Party

I know it’s going to make some of you envious, but I’ve been invited to the Middle School Dance tonight. As I grew up in France in the 80s, memories of the movie La Boum are rushing back. It’s going to be a cold and rainy weekend, so if you’re tempted by this extract you could check it out. It’s by no means a cinematic masterpiece, and certain scenes will definitely make you cringe in 2023, but in my opinion, no other film comes as close to capturing what it means to be 13 years old.

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December 10, 2021

Weekly Letter from Jean Yves - On Beauty

My office in the Elementary & Middle School Building is on the 2nd floor at the bottom of a flight of stairs. Yesterday, a little boy who was passing by paused in the doorway, walked shyly into my office, and confided in me that he wasn’t feeling too well because he’d lost his water bottle around two weeks ago now.

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November 19, 2021

Weekly Letter From Jean-Yves - The Best Job in the World

One of the things I’ve noticed in my 16 months in this city is that when New Yorkers eat out in restaurants, they have the excellent habit of striking up a conversation with the people at the table beside them. At least that is how, on a fairly regular basis, my wife Andria and I surreptitiously get to know and share delicious moments with complete strangers. What always surprises me is their reaction when I tell them what I do for a living (I can’t help myself).

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