Friday, December 16, was the date for the International School of Paris' 2016 Paris reunion. Over fifty members of the ISP community, old and new, gathered together in the Secondary School to catch up over some nibbles and mulled wine. Our former parents, students and staff members took the opportunity to catch up with members of the community and reminisce over a selection of ISP yearbooks and photo albums since the beginning of the school's history, over fifty years ago.
The reunion was also the perfect moment to wish ISP teacher Michael Collett a fond farewell after 40 years of teaching (a whopping 36 of them at ISP!). Current staff and alumni came to say goodbye to Mike before he retired to take a well-deserved change of pace. The speech below, written by student Tommaso Israely, was read aloud, explaining why Mike has been such a remarkable and memorable teacher at ISP and the inspiration he has been for our students. Needless to say, there were a few tears!
"Mr Collet has been at ISP for 35 years. You started when we had only the C building as a PE teacher. And today, as you prepare to depart ISP, it feels weird to think that we won't see you anymore, wandering around the B building, joking with students. Because when alumni remember one teacher, one person from this school, it is you. You personify what ISP is as a school: the belief of the one individual as well as the belief of the community, the belief that everyone, if they put in the hard work and dedication, can succeed. You recently said "I try to make math fun" and, from the student community, I can assure you that you have done a great job at it! Students look forward to your classes because you make math fun and simple, but the reason why so many alumni remember you today, even decades later, and the reason why I and many students here will remember you for the rest of our lives, is because you don't just teach us what's in the syllabus or textbook, you don't even just teach us math – you teach us how to be good people. And you don't just do it through rants and lectures, you teach by example, you show what it means to be hard working and dedicated, you show us what it means to be persistent and passionate, and that is something we all can learn from you. You are not just the gold standard for teachers, you are the gold standard for us as members of society. Thank you so very much for your dedication to this school and your students for the past three decades, we will miss you very, very much."
Several students, with the help of Ms Lavalle, put together a video sharing their favorite memories of Mr Collett and wishing him a happy retirement.
See the students wish Mr Collett a fond farewell in the video below:
See all the photos from the Paris reunion in the slideshow below:
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