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International Educational and Cultural Travel Experience

 

An integral part of the Gerstacker Foundation Program I is international travel and the educational and cultural experience it affords.  More precisely, it is the opportunity to view leadership in an international dimension as it is demonstrated through culture, political system, education and economics.  Following is an example of a typical visit itinerary to an international venue which in previous years has included China, Finland, Japan and Taiwan.

Day One:           

  • Late afternoon or early evening arrival.

Day Two:

  • Breakfast at hotel.
  • Meeting at Ministry of Education or equivalent local or regional Education Authority.  The purpose of the meeting is to understand how K-12 education is viewed within the national purpose and how it is administered (e.g., how it serves the national purpose, its funding, local/regional/national administration, curriculum).
  • Visit to an Elementary School.
  • Tour of the school campus.
  • Visit with Principal and Assistant Principal(s) to learn how the school is funded, organized and administered, its curriculum, the role of administrators and teachers, the community the school serves, teacher lesson preparation and collaboration, challenges administrators and teachers face, the evaluation system for administrators and teachers, etc., and the opportunity for a discussion session.
  • Visit to classrooms and interaction with students as part of the class session.
  • Visit with teachers to discuss how lessons are prepared, how teachers collaborate with each other, challenges they encounter, use of technology, etc., and the opportunity for a discussion session.
  • Lunch at school cafeteria with students, teachers and administrators.
  • Visit to Middle School.
  • Tour of school campus.
  • Visit with Principal and Assistant Principal(s) to learn how the school is funded, organized and administered, its curriculum, the role of administrators and teachers, the community the school serves, teacher lesson preparation and collaboration, challenges administrators and teachers face, the evaluation system for administrators and teachers, etc., and the opportunity for a discussion session.
  • Visit to classrooms and interaction with students are part of the class session.
  • Visit with teachers to discuss how lessons are prepared, how teachers collaborate with each other, challenges they encounter, use of technology, etc., and the opportunity for a discussion session.
  • As afternoon schedule may permit, visit to cultural sites of interest.
  • Dinner (local or regional cuisine), often with administrators and teachers from schools visited and local or regional Education officials.
  • Evening visits to cultural sites or free leisure time.

Day Three:

  • Breakfast at hotel.
  • Visit to a local or regional University and its College of Education.  The purpose of the visit is to visit with faculty and learn about teacher preparation and certification and the opportunity for a discussion session.
  • Visit to High School.
  • Tour of school campus.
  • Visit with Principal and Assistant Principals to learn how the school is funded, organized and administered, its curriculum, the role of administrators and teachers, the community the school serves, teacher lesson preparation and collaboration, challenges administrators and teachers face, the evaluation system for administrators and teachers, etc., and the opportunity for a discussion session.
  • Visit to classrooms and interaction with students as part of the class session.
  • Visit with teachers to learn how lessons are prepared, how teachers collaborate with each other, challenges they face, use of technology, etc., and the opportunity for a discussion session.
  • Lunch at the school cafeteria with administrators, teachers and students.
  • Visit to a Corporation.  The purpose of the visit is to learn how an American-affiliated company or corporation operates in an international setting, especially the leadership that is required, how education interfaces with the mission and operation of the company or corporation and the opportunity for discussion with senior company or corporation executives.  Such visits have included the Dow Chemical Company Headquarters and the Dell Corporation Headquarters in Shanghai, China and the American Chamber of Commerce, and company CEO’s in Helsinki, Finland.
  • As afternoon schedule may permit, visit to cultural sites of interest.
  • Dinner (local or regional cuisine) to include administrators and teachers from schools visited, local or regional Education officials and executives from the company or corporation visited.
  • Visit to local cultural sites or leisure time.

Day Four:

  • Departure