The Relations Within Education

Education is taught and learned in unlimited ways and places. But, a common thread among all education is opportunity. The opportunity to learn, try, or strengthen a new skill, to work and grow with new people, to learn in new ways, and even to travel to new places in the form of becoming an exchange student or studying abroad. These opportunities are not limited to just students, there are also many programs and opportunities for teachers to go out and experience new curriculums. One of these programs is Fulbright Teaching Excellence and Achievement Program (FTEA), this program is what has brought the international teachers from sixteen different countries to come and be guests on school campuses in the United States.

This year eighteen international teachers were chosen by FTEA to come to the United States. Eleven of these eighteen teachers visited Pleasant Valley High School; Felo Louis from Haiti, Rey Pardales from Panama, Oygul Isamova from Uzbekistan,Tanya Preciado from Ecuador, Eden Low from Malaysia, Helen Skripnicenko from Latvia, Victor Moreno from Peru, Luidmyla Verkasova from Ukraine, Gulnara Huseynova from Azerbaijan, Panha Chea from Cambodia, and Catherine Njau from Tanzania. Victor Moreno from Peru comments that “we came here to learn about the education system and culture but we also experience an intercultural change between us teachers, about each other’s countries, education, and culture, we’ve made a team.”

Eden Low, from Malaysia, explains, “In Malaysia, the Fulbright program was called IREX,” going on to say that “Fulbright offered me an opportunity to learn and study culture,” not just education. Gulnara Huseynova from Azerbaijan adds that “We get to experience culture diversity and student leadership,” and when asked what are some of the differences and similarities that they have seen between Pleasant Valley and their schools she replied with “the technological possibilities, we have some smart boards and chromebooks but we do not loan them to the students,” proving that we are not all that different or similar to each other.

There will always be differences in education no matter the change in time or place. Culture diversity will shape and guide education and growth over the years, eventually, making this present a distant past. We should all become a team that teaches each other and learns from one another. Sometimes all that we need is a new perspective, a new take on the world around us, to understand that there is always something new to learn.