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Le Lycée – How To Say High School In French

Le Lycée – How To Say High School In French

Today we’ll have a look at lycée, meaning “high school”. I put this word on my list as many students get confused with the pronunciation and gender. People want to say “lie-say” when the pronunciation is “lee-say”. Additionally, people think the word is feminine when in reality it’s masculine: le lycée.

le lycée[lise]

high school

Le Lycée – High School In French

Word origin

The Modern French masculine noun le lycée (high school) comes from lyceum in Latin, which in turn comes from Λύκειον (lúkeion) in Ancient Greek.

Example sentences

This first sentence is audiobiographical. I studied in a French high school in Douai, France for one year in 1991-92. I’ve included a picture of the high school at the bottom of the post!

J’ai étudié pendant un an dans un lycée français dans le nord le France.

I studied in a French high school for one year in the north of France.

This next example sentence uses the construction avant de + infinitive, which means “before verb + ing”.

Les jeunes vont au lycée avant d’aller a l’université.

Young people go to high school before going to university.

In French, the word for high school student changes based on gender: un lycéen (masculine) and une lycéenne (feminine).

Marc est un lycéen. Julie est une lycéenne.

Marc is a high school student. Julie is a high school student.


Et voilà ! Now you know how to use le lycée (high school) in French. Now check our blog post explaining the confusing French school system.

Lycée Albert Châtelet, Douai France
Lycée Albert Châtelet, Douai France – I did my junior year of high school abroad in this school in 1991-92. David (author of these word-of-the-day French lessons).

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David Issokson

David Issokson is a lifelong language enthusiast. His head is swimming with words and sounds as he speaks over six languages. Of all the languages he speaks, he's the most passionate about French! David has helped hundreds of students to improve their French in his private online lessons. When procrastinating working on FrenchLearner, David enjoys his time skiing and hiking in Teton Valley, Idaho.

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