Penticton schools showcased to Korean group

School district ramps up efforts to attract international students to Okanagan Skaha

Efforts to attract more international students to the region will ramp up next week with the visit of a group of Korean placement agents.

The agents, who are associated with Chungbuk National University and looking to place up to 40 students in Grades 3-10 here in January, will be in Penticton on Monday and Tuesday to tour the community and local schools.

“My goal over those two days is to showcase the quality of education we can provide students, and to showcase our community and what the community has to offer,” Okanagan Skaha School District superintendent Wendy Hyer told trustees at the their regular board meeting Monday.

Hyer, who will be joined by city representatives, said the district will play to its strengths.

“While we can’t offer the big-city experience… we have a great community for the markets that are interested in enjoying the outdoors and getting top-quality educations,” she explained.

During budget deliberations last spring, the board directed staff to explore expansion of the international student program as a potential new source of revenue.

Tuition fees for full-time international students are currently set at $11,700 per year. The district has about $25,000 to get its expanded program off the ground.