The student online newsmagazine of SHS

The Journal Rewired

The student online newsmagazine of SHS

The Journal Rewired

The student online newsmagazine of SHS

The Journal Rewired

A call for action

SHS faces a decline in foreign exchange students
Former exchange student, Boglárka Hangai, plays in the snow with her friends. Photo contributed by Danielle Grehn

The number of foreign exchange students attending SHS has dropped significantly. Last school year, there were seven exchange students, and now the school only has one. 

In the past year, prices for everything have gone up. Regular life necessities like gas and grocery prices have skyrocketed. Due to this issue, many families are concerned that they won’t have enough money to take care of another child.

SHS Family and Consumer Sciences teacher Danielle Grehn has not only hosted students but worked closely with Flag International, an exchange student program. 

 “Our economy has probably affected people to the point where they might be afraid to take on an extra expense,” Grehn said. 

However, parents are only responsible for feeding the student and making sure they have a bed to sleep in. Exchange students bring in their own spending money, so they can buy other items they want. Due to this fact, parents are not spending too much extra money. 

If parents are interested in hosting, they will need to go through a trusted company. For example, many of SHS’s students are placed through Flag International. This company helps place students with families. 

Many families also have concerns about being given a student who doesn’t fit in with their family. Flag International allows parents to read through a small biography about each student, so they can pick someone who they think will fit. 

Welcoming a kid one has never met before into their home and letting them live with one’s family can be intimidating. However, it can also be amazing. It’s almost like an exchange of cultures. The student learns new things from America and the host learns about the student’s culture. 

SHS orchestra teacher Thomas Wright is hosting the only foreign exchange student this year, Nico. 

“Having an exchange student helps us understand different cultures, different opinions, and ideas,” SHS orchestra teacher Thomas Wright said. 

The reason for the decline isn’t because of the lack of students, but because of the loss of families hosting. 

Being a host is also the road toward making dreams come true for children. Many countries around the world are excited to see and learn about Western culture and seek opportunities within the country. These children learn many things from this extraordinary adventure, and they’ll most likely remember this experience for the rest of their lives. Change children’s lives from all over the world today.


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