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The School-2-School program (S2S) combines virtual classroom exchange, community-based fundraising, and direct volunteering to support the learning objectives of students in the United States as well as in partner countries. Partnerships are implemented over the course of a semester or academic year and offer students and teachers the opportunity to use technology to communicate and to learn, to build cross-cultural skills, and to become unofficial ambassadors of their communities as they dispel stereotypes of the “other.” The S2S program has benefited thousands of students over the last ten years in Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bolivia, Indonesia, Iraq, Jordan, Morocco, Palestine, Panama, the Philippines, Uganda, and the United States.
Key Components of School-2-School Partnership:
|Virtual classroom-to-classroom activity||Community based fundraising||
|Lead teachers from the American school and partner school design and implement a plan for a classroom.||The American school raises money to purchase vital educational supplies requested by their partner school.|
Volunteer service in overseas partner school
|Awareness raising in wider school community|
|During the school year or over the summer, the lead educator from the American school volunteers in the partner school for 1-4 weeks.||The educator then serves as an ambassador of the experience, blogging about it, and giving presentations to the school community and the wider local community.|
The leadership, flexibility, and cultural awareness engendered among program participants supports the development of a more responsible and enlightened citizenry that navigates challenging cross-cultural situations in a reasoned and efficient way. S2S supports an environment of learning and tolerance in the US and in partner countries. Participating students have a greater chance to reach their learning objectives while they use technology to build their cross-cultural skills and represent their communities while dispelling stereotypes. Further, S2S supports the professional development of outstanding teachers, providing an opportunity to teach or train in a developing country and engendering a deeper commitment of loyalty to their school community.