New Hampshire High School to Offer Student Visas

Bow High School in Bow, New Hampshire, received federal government approval to issue visas to foreign national students, according to the Concord Monitor. BHS joins other private institutions in the United States that offer student visas to increase diversity and revenue.

Under the program, the school will have prospective international students apply directly to the school district for acceptance, the source reported. In the past, Bow High School would usually take in three international students per year through for-profit programs, but these students would not pay tuition. The new visa allowance opens up the school to more international students who will pay tuition and room-and-board fees.

“It really piqued our interest,” said John House-Myers, principal of Bow High School, told the source. “Because the idea of having tuition-paying students come in and also paying a home-stay fee to bring revenue into this community from outside of this community is really a big deal, especially in light of the current economy.”

The State Department of Education does not have public data on how many public schools offer student visas, but an official in the private school department stated that Bow High School may be the first in New Hampshire, according to the Concord Monitor.

Bow High School has hosted many international students, but because of short nature of a one-year visit, these students often lack language skills and academic focus. The current federal law only allows public schools to issue single year visas, but a bill in the U.S. Senate could give public schools the freedom to offer multi-year agreements to international families,according to the source.

“We certainly would like to have a multiple-year commitment as well because then the students are really invested, engaged with the community,” House-Myers said. “They develop relationships with our students that could last a lifetime.”

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