They all used different words but expressed the same feeling. Whether president of the region or head of the
Flags of the world plus one. On the right, the flag of the Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur Region with the stripes of Provence, the dolphin of the Dauphiné province and the eagle of the County of Nice.
President of the PACA Region, Michel Vauzelle summed up the general feeling when he said: "This is a moment of pure happiness. It is the reward for all our work as politicians and administrators. This place has no equivalent in the world and at the same time it is a school like any other... an integral part of the French educational system. It was designed for "ITER children" but it is, and will always be, open to all."
Michel Vauzelle surrounded by a sea of flags. In the second row from left to right: préfet Pierre N'Gahane; Departement Council President Jean-Louis Bianco; ITER Director-General Osamu Motojima; Recteur Jean-Paul de Gaudemar; Christophe Castaner, Mayor of Forcalquier and Vice-President of the Regional Council; and other personalities.
Before gathering for the speeches in the auditorium, the large crowd of officials, parents and teachers had taken an extensive tour of the premises. All were equally impressed by the daring concrete-and-wood architecture, the scope of activities offered to the students, their command of languages, and by what President Bianco of Alpes-de-Haute-Provence département called "... the beautiful and amazing gathering of students coming from nearly 30 nations."
Cutting the symbolic ribbon. Bernard Jeanmet-Peralta, the Mayor of Manosque, and Jean-Paul Clément, Director of the International School, stand between Director-General Motojima and Region President Vauzelle. The inauguration was attended by the Consul-Generals of Japan and of the United States (in the background).