Foreign exchange students impacted by Hurricane Harvey


WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – Many foreign exchange students are without hosting families as Hurricane Harvey continues to flood many homes along the Texas and Louisiana coast.

The International Student Exchange Program has students already placed in the area impacted by Hurricane Harvey, and the states were scheduled to get more. Now, the program is looking to other states to help place the students who are now without host families. The regional adviser for the state of Kansas for international student exchange, Connie Chaple, says there are about 150 to 200 students who will need host families in different states. She says Kansas usually places 50 to 100 students and will now try to place 5 to 10 more students.

The International Student Exchange Program only has male students left to be placed. They range from the ages of 15 to 18 and are finishing up their senior year of school. These are permanent placements, and they would not relocate the student once the flooding situation in Texas and Louisiana is under control. It is a nine month program for the 2017- 2018 school year.

Right now, the Wichita deadline to accept foreign exchange students has closed, but there are several school districts that are still open. Chaple hopes that some school districts will allow the students to enroll due to the devastation in along the coast.

Chaplin says you have to agree to open your home, fill out an online application, and be approved through background checks. They are looking for families who can provide a good home environment that will allow the student to have an active school year and be involved with the school. Host families also must provide students with three balanced meals a day. Students are provided with money from their natural families for lunches at school. Students also are covered fully by insurance if they were to be injured.

If you are interested in hosting a foreign exchange student, you can click here to head to the International Student Exchange website, or you can call the Kansas regional adviser Connie Chaple at 316-249-4354.

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