Niagara Gazette


August 28, 2013

Lew-Port recognized as Confucius Institute


Niagara Gazette — Not a lot of time will be given to contemplate how the new program will work, either. Lew-Port is expected to welcome a Chinese teacher to town today, with a second teacher arriving next week before students report for opening of classes Wednesday. Neither teacher is part of the school's partnership with Tianjin No. 2, which Casseri said is unfortunate, though he understands why it happened.

"Tianjin No. 2 had budget issues," Casseri said. "Our partnership with them was supposed to be direct, but it's not as direct as we thought."

Eventually, Casseri said the goal is to draw students from China and other countries to enter Lew-Port for one full year of classes and graduate with high school diplomas. Colleges looking to expand their foreign student population have shown interest already in partnering with the school to bring students to the country, have them earn a high school diploma and enter college the next year.

Casseri said it could be lucrative for the school if it works out.

"If we can get 10 students (who pay tuition), that's $100,000 right there," he said. "While I'd like to see some of that money go toward the international studies program, that's up to (the school board). But the program runs about $23,000 every year. With what's left, that's a teacher's salary right there."

"What we're doing is actually quite progressive," Townsend said. "I've overwhelmed a couple schools who've contacted me about what they'd need to do to do this as well. If you look at some of the other schools out there, they're not exactly doing this."

Contact reporter Timothy Chipp at 282-2311, ext. 2251 or follow on Twitter @timchipp.

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