How the Network is distinguished from typical exchange programs:
• We exchange students and faculty for specific educational programs in an effort to capitalize on and share our special strengths and resources.
• We do not expect these exchanges to occur on a directly reciprocal basis.
• We have built into the organization an ongoing quality control. Programs are reviewed before schools are invited to join, and established member schools continue to update and improve their programs in consultation with one another and Network staff.
Students and teachers are exchanged directly from school to school. The host institution provides the educational program and the living arrangements, usually in family home-stays or in school dormitories, in the case of residential schools. Students generally exchange for one to three weeks; teachers for one to two weeks. Group exchanges are also possible. The Network advisors communicate directly to make arrangements and send all applications, health and permission forms through the Central Office, which provides grant assistance when needed.
The member schools include public and independent schools and districts; the presence of both of these sectors is a cornerstone of the Network. Each member school or district pays annual membership dues. In an effort to retain the informal, cooperative atmosphere which has characterized the Network from its inception, the Board of Directors has decided to make changes to the Network’s membership slowly, with a maximum of two or three new schools being admitted each year. We identify those schools on the basis of the diversity they offer the Network, taking into account our balance of public and independent schools, our geographic diversity, program range and specialization, and maintenance of educational quality.
If your school or district is interested in pursuing membership:
1. Identify programs or aspects of your school that might appeal to visiting students.
Ideally, the program is organized for students to participate fully over several weeks. Try to focus on an area that is unique to your school or community, or one in which your school is particularly strong.
2. Write or call our central office to tell us your ideas and ask questions.
3. Share your school website and any printed information about your proposed program area(s), school, and community.
This information will be shared with our Membership Committee, a subcommittee of the Board of Directors.
4. A member of the Board of Directors will visit your school before the Membership Committee makes a decision.
To start the application process or for more information,
Sandii Ostmeyer, Executive Secretary