Home' LFNY Magazine : Winter 2015 Contents 59
lycée français de new york
“From the Heart” by Alexandra Giurgiu Piol (’76)
My heart beats fast: My first day
of school in what was then called
onzième: I only understood one
word uttered that year: “tomate.”
The rest was like watching a movie
that was not dubbed. Eventually
I caught up. The year was 1964.
My heart beats fast: Getting the
results of the Baccalaureate exam.
The year was 1976.
My heart beats fast: Finally
graduating: but, wait: I was going
to miss all my friends...When will
I see them again?
My heart beats fast: My husband
and I chose the East 95th Street
location for our wedding recep-
tion. May I add he is Italian? The
year was 1984.
My heart beats fast: Taking my
daughter to her first day of school
at the Lycée. The year was 1994.
My heart beats fast: My daughter
had the same first grade teacher
that I had when I attended the
Lycée. The year was 1996.
My heart beats fast: Something
was not right at the School:
I had to say something I had to
do something. At the Lycée, I had
been taught to question every-
thing and to be rigorous in my
approach, and, above all, to do
My heart beats fast: With a
group of fellow parents we were
committed to deciphering what
was wrong, and we were deter-
mined to take action and fix it.
My heart beats fast: We were
the agents of change and we
focused on rebuilding: there was
no turning back. The years were
My heart beats fast: Taking my
youngest for his first day of school
at the Lycée in this changing envi-
ronment. The year was 1998.
My heart beats fast: Watching
the school move to its new location.
Everyone under one roof ? “Un rêve
inespéré!” The year was 2003.
My heart beats fast: The dawn of
a new era: First day of classes in
the new building.
My heart beats fast: It’s working,
the kids love their new school;
the energy in the hallways of the
school is palpable.
My heart beats fast: A student
tells me: “The School is getting
better and better every year.”
My heart beats fast: The 75th
anniversary reception: simply
amazing. The year was 2010.
My heart beats fast: Every year
presenting awards to graduating
students. Always an inspirational
My heart beats fast: The com-
mon denominator in all of us is
the child: in me, in you, in the
students, in my children, in their
teachers and in all people from all
walks of life and the four corners
of the Universe and for Eternity.
My heart is beating faster:
Always remembering I too was
once a child. This is what always
makes my heart beat faster and my
head think clearer in my moments
My heart is beating even faster:
Never forget to embrace the
children who teach us valuable
lessons every day! After all, the
forever passion for my children
has always been the driving force
behind my never-ending passion
And now, all of a sudden, my
heart stops beating for I must
bid farewell to an exceptional
group of people in an ever evolv-
ing and exceptional school. The
year is 2015.
And now, slowly my heart
starts to beat fast again: It is
time to say:
LFNY: Thank you for all the
memories. I may be leaving
the LFNY, but the LFNY will
never leave me.
Alexandra Piol (’76) has given back to the Lycée Français through-
out her life. She was married at the school and sent her two
children here. She worked with the former Board of Trustees,
including then Board Chair Elsa Berry and François Château, to
bring the school to its new location in 2003. Reaching the end of
their terms, she, along with parent Michel Brogard, stepped down
from the Board this year after years of tireless service to the school.
Their legacy is everlasting. Alexandra wrote this poem about what
the Lycée has meant to her.
Alexandra Piol, promotion 1976, n’a cessé de donner au Lycée Français
tout au long de sa vie. Elle s’y est mariée et ses deux enfants y ont
poursuivi leurs études. Siégeant au sein du Conseil d’administration
aux côtés de François Château et sous l’égide d’Elsa Berry, elle a con-
tribué au déménagement du Lycée en 2003. Arrivée au terme de son
mandat tout comme Michel Brogard, un autre parent, Madame Piol
tire sa révérence, après des années de service. Tous les deux laissent
derrière eux une empreinte durable. Dans le poème qui suit, Alexandra
Piol explique ce que le Lycée a signifié pour elle.
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