Mrs. Goodspeed said they felt it would be beneficial for her sons, one of whom is adopted from South Korea, to interact with other cultures. The Goodspeeds have since hosted four international students.
“If it weren’t benefiting our students, I wouldn’t do this program,” Hults told Education Week. “It truly does benefit our students. It has opened their eyes. It has given them broad exposure to the world, and for the kids who come here, they remain a part of our community. I think they will forever.”
Hults has also focused on giving high-school students the opportunity to pursue an associate’s degree from a community college.
Students can already accumulate college credits, and the idea is to see if some can graduate with both a high-school degree and an associate’s degree in either math/science or liberal arts.
“I am extremely excited, as this will help my 13-year-old son,” said Ed La Course, the parent of an eighth-grader. “The money I could save! We will be the flagship of what could change education at the high-school level.
“We will likely be an experiment that will not be duplicated for many years. Will it work? We won’t know for several years, until after the eighth-graders have graduated college. Was it too much? Can an 18-year-old transition to his junior year of college out of high school? Skip Hults is going to find out. I believe this will be his legacy.”
La Course is impressed with the school superintendent.
“What Skip Hults has done is nothing short of amazing,” La Course said. “The international program is obviously a huge success, in my opinion. The fact that enrollment keeps climbing each year is even more amazing.”
Newcomb School Board President Kevin Boland said the recognition being received “is an honor for our school and community. Our superintendent and staff have worked very hard to make this program work, and our community has been very receptive.
“Several areas schools that were once skeptical of the international program are now starting programs of their own.”
Hults is thankful for the cooperation he has received.
“I believe that this honor goes less to me and more to the board, the staff, the students and the community. This program only works because of them. I am the recipient on their behalf.”
Email Alvin Reiner at: firstname.lastname@example.org