Japanese students and teachers from Gojo Senior High School in Nara, Japan, will spend a week visiting Bendigo and beyond, as part of a student exchange programme run by Girton Grammar School.
The Japanese students will attend classes at Girton Grammar and stay with host families. They will visit a number of tourist attractions in Bendigo, the surrounding region and in Melbourne.
Girton Grammar established a sister school relationship with Gojo Senior High School in 1992, making the exchange programme one of the longest running in Regional Victoria.
Gojo has been sending a group of 10-20 students to Bendigo every March for the past 25 years. In return, Girton students studying Japanese take part in a trip to Japan during the September school holidays every second year and more recently, also during the summer holidays. Students visit places like Tokyo, Kyoto and Hiroshima and have an opportunity to attend Gojo Senior High School and experience a homestay in Japan.
Mr Matthew Maruff said that foreign language exchanges provide tremendous benefits to students.
“These trips not only improve the learning of a second language but foster a more open-minded attitude towards people of a very different culture.
“After 25 years of student exchanges, the friendship between Girton and Gojo continues to deepen and with the growing importance of Australia’s position in the Pacific Rim, this is an incredibly valuable experience for our students on many levels,” he said.