03.03.2021 – 09:00
Carl Duisberg Center
For a student exchange to North America? This is also possible during the pandemic. The USA has enjoyed greater popularity again since President Joe Biden took office and the trend towards Canada remains unbroken. The student exchange professionals from the non-profit Carl Duisberg Centers have put together what parents and teenagers should pay attention to when choosing a destination, what regulations and restrictions there are currently on site and how school attendance works with Corona.
Since March 2020 there has been an official ban on entering the USA for anyone who has been in the Schengen area 14 days before entering the country. But since the summer there has been an exception for exchange students with J-1 or F-1 visas. The reason for this: these programs are considered to be of national interest. Whether a visa can actually be applied for depends on the lockdown regulations in this country. Because the US embassies in Germany must also adhere to the local contact restrictions. Once this is done, students willing to travel must present a negative PCR or antigen test to the airlines, which must not be older than three days. Quarantine after arrival in the USA is currently not mandatory. However, the recommendation is to stay at home for seven days and to take another test for Covid-19 after three to five days. A special visa is also required to enter Canada: the “Study Permit” and a PCR test for Covid-19 are mandatory. A two-week quarantine is also mandatory, during which the orientation events take place online. During these 14 days, the students receive close supervision from the host family and the supervisor.
School and Lessons
Schools and school districts in the USA are allowed to coordinate the design of their own lessons. Therefore there are big differences in how learning is done and whether this offers ‘remote learning’ i.e. distance learning, face-to-face teaching or a mix of both. In Canada, school tuition takes place in a mix of face-to-face and online. At the moment, two subjects are often taught per quarter and then switched so that too many groups of students do not mix. Physical education takes place at a reduced rate.
The election of the new US President Joe Biden could lead to new measures to combat pandemics. In principle, the USA has enjoyed greater popularity as a destination for student exchanges since he took office. In rural areas, where fewer people live in a larger area, there are currently no or few contact restrictions. The regulations differ from region to region. In Canada, on the other hand, there are contact restrictions for private appointments: While school lessons mostly take place face-to-face in schools, it is currently not allowed to meet outside with another household.
Boarding school instead of host family
Boarding, i.e. accommodation in a boarding school, is currently very much in demand. Here, too, there has been an upward trend in registration numbers for the United States since Joe Biden’s inauguration. If you decide to board in Canada, you should plan an entire school year, shorter visits are only possible at a few schools.
Other press photos: https://www.cdc.de/index.php?id=173
Current information on student exchanges during Corona with the Carl Duisberg Centers: https://www.carl-duisberg-schueleraustausch.de/covid-19-pandemie.html
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Original content by: Carl Duisberg Centren, transmitted by news aktuell