The need for host families for foreign exchange students in North Carolina is greater as more restrictions are lifted following pandemic lockdowns. The nonprofit study abroad organization, Foreign Links Around the Globe or FLAG, is in the midst of placing high school students from more than 51 countries with families in the United States.
"We are looking for families that would love to host any high school for an exchange student for between five to ten months," said Allison Stalberg, a coordinator for FLAG in Orange County.
"The students stay for either one school semester or two school semesters," Stalberg said.
Individual school districts have their own policies on allowing exchange students as restrictions are being lifted across the nation. Stalberg says the need is great for host families as so many students missed out on any opportunities during coronavirus lockdowns. FLAG has also implemented new policies due to the pandemic.
'When it comes to vaccinations, they will be tested before they come here," Stalberg said. "We personally cannot guarantee they will be vaccinated, but they will certainly be tested. And once they get here, they can be vaccinated."
Students must pass an English test to take part in FLAG's program.