International education focus keeps growing

International education will become increasingly important as the global economy calls upon various cultures to work together, says a leader with Red Deer Public Schools.

International education will become increasingly important as the global economy calls upon various cultures to work together, says a leader with Red Deer Public Schools.

Robert Porkka, director of international education, said they’ve continued to expand programming because they see how vital it is to keep students ahead in the global game.

“It’s very interconnected and we’ll have to work with many different cultures,” said Porkka.

“So it’s important that students consider studying and learning skills such as a second language.”

It’s important for teachers to have international experiences so they can better relate to the students and particularly those who are moving here from all over the world, Porkka said.

During International Education Week which runs until today, Porkka is pushing the new International Certificate program being offered through Hunting Hills High School, Lindsay Thurber Comprehensive High School and Gateway Christian School.

Students will take a group of studies, have an international experience themselves, study a second language and doing some global citizenship work. At the end of Grade 12, they would receive this certificate.

The public education system has a long list of programs. The international student program involves up to 70 students from around the globe each year.

There’s a teacher exchange program, which currently has two teachers from Australia and two from Red Deer on exchanges until Christmas.

A Spanish bilingual program exists at G.H. Dawe Elementary School, plus there’s French immersion programs involving about 1,000 students. Japanese, Chinese, Spanish and French as a second language programs exist as well.

And a Chinese language program runs at West Park and Eastview Middle Schools. A teacher from China is responsible for the program for two years.

Paul Stewart, associate superintendent for Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools, said that international education is also important for children to understand other cultures. A number of students may be refugees or immigrants, and some may be here to come just for school.

“We want our schools to better understand where these students are coming from and how they do things,” said Stewart. “It’s not just the Canadian way. We learn to respect differences as well as our similarities.”

Stewart said their international programs are similar to Red Deer Public since they’ve worked in the past with them and Red Deer College.

A Japanese teacher and a Chinese teacher are here right now. The school district also has French immersion and Spanish options are offered in high school.

During this week, Catholic schools are doing various activities including having prayers and announcements in different languages read over some school PA systems.

ltester@bprda.wpengine.com

Just Posted

Red Deer mall repurposes former Sears location

The Great Indoors Market at Bower officially launches Nov. 10

Red Deer-area businesses prepare for economic boost from Canadian Finals Rodeo

Hotels, restaurants, gift shops get ready for rodeo fans

Sylvan Lake considering banning charcoal barbecues in lakefront parks

Town council wants more information on concerns about charcoal barbecues and over-sized tents

Winter Games relocates its Volunteer Centre

Now open at Bower Place in Red Deer

WATCH: Make-A-Wish grants Star Wars loving teen’s wish

The Make-A-Wish Foundation granted Anakin Suerink’s wish in Red Deer Saturday afternoon

Coalition of consumer groups calls for new code of conduct for telecom sales

A new government-backed code of conduct is needed to protect consumers from… Continue reading

Canadian National Railway rakes in record revenues amid concerns over capacity

MONTREAL — Canadian National Railway Co. says it raked in the highest… Continue reading

Alberta Party candidates set for Red Deer

The Alberta Party will have candidates running in both Red Deer-South and… Continue reading

Montreal Alouettes defensive lineman Woody Baron co-authors children’s book

TORONTO — Woody Baron finds the spectre of tangling with a hulking… Continue reading

Sundin not surprised Leafs asking stars to take less money to stay together

TORONTO — Mats Sundin isn’t surprised the Toronto Maple Leafs are asking… Continue reading

Anywhere but Washington: Why DC stories rarely film in DC

WASHINGTON — It’s a hobby among District of Columbia locals: Picking apart… Continue reading

‘Halloween’ scares up $77.5 million in ticket sales

LOS ANGELES — Forty years after he first appeared in theatres, Michael… Continue reading

iPhone XR makes the right trade-offs for a cheaper price

NEW YORK — Apple offers you a simple trade-off with its new… Continue reading

Most Read