Getting to Know Their Neighbors

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Shoreham-Wading River High School teamed up with Longwood High School this month for the first Cultural Exchange program, organized by Shoreham-Wading River High School Principal Dan Holtzman and Longwood teachers Jayson Kiang and Brian Leyhane. Twenty-five students from each district took turns visiting the neighboring district’s school to learn more about their peers.

“The main objective of this program is to help debunk stereotypes and for students to see how other districts operate,” said Leyhane. “It’s an eye-opening experience for students to learn about kids their age who are living and going to a school in the town right next to them that is different than their own,” added Kiang.

Participating students were paired with a “buddy” from the opposite school whom they shadowed – Shoreham-Wading River students at Longwood High School on Dec. 3 and Longwood students at Shoreham-Wading River High School on Dec. 11.

“I enjoyed the fact that we were able to blend in and meet new people,” said Shoreham-Wading River student Julia Pase of her visit to Longwood.

“This has been a tremendous experience for students from both schools,” said Holtzman. “The program exposes students to life outside their school and furthers their ability to relate, communicate and be accepting.” To conclude the project, every student will write a one-page essay about their experience, which will then be shared with their peers from the other district.