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10.9.P.1 Admission of Exchange and Foreign Students

Section 10.9 - Policy

 Guidelines for the Enrollment of Foreign Students

Public Law 104-208, "Omnibus Consolidated Appropriations Act, 1997, Section 625 of the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996" (including Department of State regulations under 22 C.F.R. 62.25) and A.R.S. 15-823 provides certain guidelines and restrictions for admission of nonresident foreign students and foreign exchange students at the high school level in grades nine (9) through twelve (12).

These guidelines address foreign exchange students classified as J-1 under the above law.  These students have residence in a foreign country to which they plan to return and are coming temporarily to the United States as participants in a program that has been approved by the U.S. Information Agency.

The Superintendent or the Superintendent's designee must identify and develop a list of foreign student exchange programs for approval and such organizations must be included in the Council on Students for International Educational Travel (CSIET).

Program Approval for J-1 Foreign Exchange Students

Approved exchange programs must have a local representative in the Phoenix Metropolitan area who coordinates, supervises, and monitors placement and progress of foreign exchange students in the program.

All J-1 foreign exchange students must enroll in the Dysart Unified School District through an exchange program which has been approved by the Superintendent and is included on the list of approved sponsoring organizations.

Foreign students in educational exchange programs will be accepted for attendance based on the following qualifications and conditions:
  • There must be space available in the host high school.  Only two (2) foreign exchange students will be admitted per year per high school upon approval of the principal.
  • Approved programs must submit student applications by June 1 to be processed and approved by the head counselor and the principal no later than August 1 of the year of attendance and prior to local school enrollment.
  • Attendance is limited to a maximum of one (1) school year.  Partial enrollments of less than two (2) full semesters are generally not accepted.  Placement for either an academic semester or year, or calendar year program will be determined based on student request and principal approval.
  • Students will be accepted generally in grades eleven (11) and twelve (12).  Admission of students below grade eleven (11) will be reviewed and approved on a case-by-case basis.
  • Students may not have completed more than eleven (11) years of primary and secondary study, exclusive of kindergarten (K), or be at least fifteen (15) years of age but not more than eighteen years and six months (18 1/2 years) of age as of the program start date.
  • Sponsoring organizations must inform the District of any student who has completed secondary school in his/her home country.

Academic Program Guidelines:
  • Each student's final schedule is to be determined by appropriate school personnel.
  • Foreign students are ineligible to take driver's education classes.
  • Twelfth (12th) grade foreign students are ineligible to receive a high school diploma, but may earn honorary certificates and may participate in graduation exercises.
  • Foreign students must be enrolled in an American literature course and a U.S. History or U.S. Government course.
  • Students must have adequate English to function without special assistance or programming for Limited English Language students.  An indicator of each student's English language proficiency is required.
  • Students must have acceptable academic achievement in their native countries.
  • A translated and certified copy of the student's transcript with a description of the curriculum shall be required prior to enrollment.
  • Each student and/or sponsoring organization must provide the following documents to the head counselor prior to enrollment:
    • Current official transcript with appropriate English translation showing courses taken and grades earned;
    • VISA;
    • Evidence of medical insurance that will cover the student while residing in the U.S.;
    • Physical examination showing good physical health;
    • Immunization records;
    • Permission to participate in interscholastic athletics and other school sanctioned and sponsored extra-curricular activities if participation is desired and authorized by the District.  The student must meet the requirements of athletic eligibility.
  • The sponsoring organization must pay the student fees required of all Dysart students.
  • The host family must live in the attendance area where admission is sought.  Preference will be given to foreign students whose host family has a high school student attending the high school in which admission is sought.  Exceptions to the specific school admission may be reviewed on a case-by-case basis by the principal based upon academic or specific program requests by the student.
  • The District does not provide foreign students with financial assistance for such things as class rings, year books, activity cards, lunches, student insurance or student fees.

Each school shall designate a person to be the contact between the school and the sponsoring organization, to the host family and the District office.

Dysart Unified School District is not certified to accept students with certain visa classifications through the Student and Exchange Visitor program (SVEP), a part of the National Security Investigations Division.  Therefore, Dysart Unified School District can only accept Foreign Exchange Students holding a J-1 Visa and attending through an approved exchange program.