Bethany School has been a part of the ISSE (International School to School Experience) program for decades! What is ISSE? It is “a unique international program for schools that provides for the exchange of thoughts and ideas through face-to-face contact with children from other countries around the world. It is non-profit, non-political, and non-religious in nature. The program gives all 10-12 year old school children the opportunity to experience and understand other cultures on a first-hand basis. It is an innovative approach for schools that realize the importance of international experience in modern school education.”
Our most recent exchanges have been with Costa Rica and Australia. They were amazing experiences for both hosts and travelers.
Our next exchange is with Bal Bharati School in New Delhi, India. They will send their delegates to us in the April/May time frame. We will send our delegates there in the fall.
To continue to foster these relationships and have successful exchanges, we need volunteers! We need 6 hosts from the current 5th and 6th grades who are willing to open their hearts and homes for three weeks and include the visitor as one of the family. Hosting involves caring for the child as one of your own during the week (they go to school with your child), taking them on planned group outings, involving them in the normal family activities, and showing them as much as possible the coolest things Cincinnati has to offer. The three weeks are action-packed and fun-filled.
We also need 6 adventurous, students willing to travel in the fall for three weeks (dates tbd). Students who are currently in 4th, 5th grade, or 6th grades who will be no older than 12 years old in the fall are invited to apply. “The ideal ISSE ambassadors are eager, positive children who are adaptable, polite, respectful, and well-rounded.” Delegates must be comfortable giving classroom presentations and performing in a cultural program before the entire host school. They must also be willing to try new things (staying with an new family, eating different foods, participating in different activities and games). They must also be able to keep up with assignments sent along by their teachers.
We will hold informational meetings for parents of students who are interested in learning more about hosting and/or traveling. You can attend either session: Thursday, February 8th at 7:00 pm in the library or Friday, February 9th at 8:00 in the dining room.
We hope you will consider these once-in-a-lifetime opportunities! They can be life changing!