by Mitchell Kirk
A group of 30 Chinese citizens — students, teachers and an education delegate — are scheduled to arrive in Logansport tonight for the start of a nearly weeklong cultural exchange visit.
At a welcoming ceremony at Logansport High School this evening, 27 Chinese students ages nine through 12 will be paired with a host family and assigned to a school they’ll attend through Wednesday.
Franklin and Landis elementary schools will host the cultural exchange visit, where Logansport Community School Superintendent Michele Starkey said the Chinese students will attend classes and become acquainted with a typical American school day.
Starkey said Chinese teachers will be visiting with Franklin and Landis teachers and principals to talk about curriculum and how the educators conduct their classes.
“They’ll also be doing home stays,” Starkey said. “They’ll get to experience what it’s like at our houses here. It’s exciting.”
The visitors hail from Zhejiang, a province on China’s east coast. The city of Logansport signed sister school agreements with seven Zhejiang schools in January.
Hayley LaDow, principal at Franklin Elementary, said the school’s student council will meet with the Chinese students Monday morning. They’ll also attend the opening of the school’s community garden and take a field trip to the Cass County Historical Society.
“We’re excited to share our love of learning here with the students and maybe one day our students will get to go and visit them,” LaDow said.
On Tuesday, the guests and their hosts will attend an event at Spencer Park, where they’ll be able to go for a ride on the Dentzel Carousel and tour a Logansport Fire Department truck.
Later this month, three Logansport High School English teachers will be leaving for Zhejiang, where they will spend the month of June teaching English at Logansport’s sister schools and staying with a host family. Beth Meyers, Jitka Nelson and Melanie Lang, all English teachers at the high school, will be meeting with the two Chinese teachers this week in preparation for their visit.
Mitchell Kirk is a staff reporter at the Pharos-Tribune. He can be reached at 574-732-5130 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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