Serving Dexter schools as international student host family a unique opportunity

Since first starting out as a reporter in Washtenaw County, I’ve reported a few times on host families for students from abroad studying in the US.

Nobody I’ve ever talked to who has signed up for this responsibility has ever regretted it.

The Dexter Community Schools are looking for folks to step up to the plate for this unique, rewarding experience for the upcoming school year.

“As we finalize plans for the start of the 2015-2106 school year, we are requesting your assistance,” said Superintendent Chris Timmis in a letter to parents sent out earlier this month.

“Several international students are looking for caring families to open their homes for the 2015-2016 school year. Some of the students are from our Sister Schools in China while others are from Thailand, Sweden, Vietnam, Germany, Finland, or Spain.”

This is the first year that Dexter has undertaken a program quite like this, although students from abroad have attended Dexter Community Schools on other more traditional exchange student programs or simply as recent immigrants to our country.

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The flags that hang from the ceiling as you enter the main entrance of Dexter High School represent the different countries from which past and present DHS students originally hailed from before arriving in Dexter to be a part of the quintessential American experience.

“As a result of these exchange programs, Dexter students and families have developed life-long friendships with our international students,” Timmis said. “Extending far beyond friendship, cultural exchange programs open doors for academic and professional opportunities for host family students as well as their guests.”

Host families are reimbursed for weekly expenses and receive local support to enhance this culturally-enriching experience for everyone involved.

If you are interested in hosting a student from one of our Sister Schools in China this fall, please contact Kim Covert at covertk@dexterschools.org or 734-424-4100 ext. 1401.

If you are interested in hosting a student from one of the other countries listed above, please contact Melanie Smith at Melanie.smith@educatius.org or 602-820-6642.

Or, if you know of a caring family who may not currently have students at DCS but would be willing to host a student, please let us know.

If you have news that you would like us to cover, send an email to Content and Community Manager Sean Dalton at seandalton@welovedexter.com.

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