Model School

This Model School Policy on International Student Exchange has been endorsed by: National Association of Secondary School Principals (NASSP); National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) and American Association of School Administrators (AASA).

School Expectations of Student Exchange Program

All schools should reserve right of final approval on all student placements. Additionally, schools should require that each individual student exchange program must:

  • Be listed in the most current CSIET Advisory List (for the current list visit
  • Maintain a network of qualified and trained local representative living in or near the community, with responsibility for each student - and provide orientation and ongoing support for both the host family and student.
  • Provide continuing hands-on monitoring and responsiveness - from local representative to national headquarters - including student selection and preparation, selection and screening of host families, ongoing contact with host family and student, and communication with the school and responsiveness to school needs.
  • Receive school enrollment authorization for placements each year prior to contacting potential host families - and follow school policy on timing and requirements.
  • Screen and prepare exchange students while monitoring their progress during the school year, responding to issues or problems as they develop.
  • Arrange host family placements before exchange students leave their home country. Exchange students are expected to be in their host family and school placements by the first day of classes.
  • Personally interview and screen all potential host families, matching student and family interests and personalities.
  • Not knowingly place exchange students based on their athletic abilities.
  • In the event that tutoring/ESL help is needed, the organization will make arrangements and ensure that the student accepts financial responsibility for it.

The school must also be provided with a complete student application which includes the following:

  • Personal letter from the student
  • Detailed information on student and natural family
  • Proof that the student has sufficient language ability to function in an American classroom
  • Original transcript of student's high school grades, with English translation (and this must meet school requirements)
  • Necessary medical history, including proof of immunization as required by the school district, any medical/physical restrictions and a recent physical exam with proof of required immunizations

School Expectations for Students on J-1 Visa Sponsorships

  • Each exchange student must be qualified to participate in regular classes and maintain a typical schedule - this means an acceptable level of proficiency in the English language, a commitment to treat coursework as important, and the social skills to enjoy participation in social and extra-curricular activities.
  • International exchange students must be aware that participating in interscholastic athletic teams means they must comply with district and state athletic eligibility regulations, and that many teams require try-outs.
  • The school appreciates the difficulty of a student's plunge into a different language/culture/institution, but exchange students are expected to attain passing grades by the end of their first semester.
  • Exchange students; enrollment eligibility will be for one-year only - exchange students and host families are expected to know and must follow all school policies and rules.
  • Exchange students must have medical and accident insurance that meets or exceeds U.S. Department of State guidelines.
  • Since there is wide variation of graduation policies in the United States, exchange students will understand that they are not guaranteed the ability to graduate or be granted diplomas.

Want to be an Exchange Student?
Student Trips

SAI relies on local contacts across the United States for placement, supervision and direct contact with all of our students, host families and schools.

Our Representatives

Our Student American International representatives provide ongoing support for SAI students and their host families, and as such, are key to the SAI support network.

Terri Nebraska Experience: 25+ years There is no one that has more knowledge of the exchange programs, students feelings and host parent relations.
Barb Nebraska Experience: 15+ Years Barb works with SAI in Nebraska for over 15 years plus she has many more years in exchange.

View all our Representatives

Our Students

Meet our students and decide if you'll be the loving host family to bring the world closer together for an exchange student.

View our students