Group looking for TUSD families to host exchange students

Group looking for TUSD families to host exchange students

TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) - Tucson coordinators for the Council on International Educational Exchange, a non-profit organization promoting international education and exchange, are looking for families in the Tucson Unified School District to host exchange students for the 2016-2017 school year.

Coordinator Melisa Vega said the students will be arriving throughout August so they're taking applications now. She said they currently have ten students with CIEE that will be attending schools in Vail, Sahuarita and Tucson.

To become a host family, they must complete an online application that includes background checks and references. Coordinators also require an in-person interview in their home.  Once the family is vetted, they'll be matched with a student.

"I have family members in Ohio who used to host exchange students when I was growing up," said Kathy Sanchez, who chose to host an exchange student for the first time this school year. "We talked about it for a few years and thought now is a good time."

The Sanchez family welcomed 16-year-old Paula Bortolini Barreto, a student from Vila Velha, Brazil, and greeted her with open arms as she landed at Tucson International Airport Thursday. Barreto will be attending Sabino High School on the north east side.

"It's very interesting to see the culture that she's coming from and then the culture that she's going to be living in for the next 10 months," said Richard Sanchez.

If you'd like more information on becoming a host family, call CIEE's local coordinators Melisa and Lawrence Vega directly at (480) 495-7073 or (480) 495-7072.

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