Foreign Exchange Student Qualifications

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Foreign Exchange Student Qualification Requirements



  • Inbound student applications are accepted beginning February 1. (See note below)
  • Applications are accepted until all available openings are filled.
  • Applications are only accepted from programs in good standing with OHS who can also document approval and good standing with CSIET and Washington State


  • Students must be between the ages of 16 to 18 at the beginning of the fall term of their exchange year.
  • Above average grades/academic success (A/B average) as demonstrated through official transcripts/documentation.
  • Have all immunizations as required by the State of Washington.
  • Sponsored through a CSIET & Washington State approved exchange program. (Exchange programs must also demonstrate sufficient support structure for students in their program to assist students in the familial, cultural, and linguistic adjustment. Support options include: sponsored events, agency/organization functions, retreats, local contact/advisor, etc.
  • Demonstrate community involvement, leadership, extracurricular interests, etc through official documentation and personal essay.
  • Possess adequate English language to participate academically and socially at OHS. We understand that students are developing English language skills throughout the school year while they are on exchange. Olympia High School does not offer sheltered English nor ESL classes.

Hard Copy Legible Applications must include:

  • Personal letter from the student
  • Official, approved transcripts from the student's home school with English translation
  • Necessary medical history, proof of immunizations as required by the Olympia School District
  • Official student application to participate in the exchange program
  • Name/address of confirmed host family who resides within the OHS boundaries.
  • Year of anticipated graduation from home school (for athletic eligibility purposes)
  • Copies of rules as regulated by the exchange program
  • Any pictures available as part of the program application process

Please note:
The Olympia School District does not award diplomas for any exchange students. Students are awarded an honorary diploma for successful completion of the school year and a certificate of attendance. In addition, official transcripts will be mailed the summer following graduation to each individual exchange student for their records

Foreign Exchange Student Qualifications Requirements

  • Students are enrolled in courses as required by US Law as well as placed in classes by ability and "grade" level.
  • All inbound students are enrolled as "seniors" but they will not receive a diploma. This is so they may experience prom, graduation, etc that are unique to the US school system.

Limitations and Exceptions

OHS openly encourages applications from all nationalities, religious and ethnic backgrounds. As a means of providing an enriching experience for all OHS students, we strive to include as many diverse nations as possible. With this in mind, we limit the number of students from each country to one per school year and strive not to host students from the same country for two consecutive years. For more information feel free to contact: Marion Sheridan via email.


  • FEX students from the following countries have been (or currently are) hosted by OHS:
  • '16-'17-Brazil, Denmark, France, Italy, Norway, India
  • ’17-’18-Spain, Germany, Switzerland, Thailand, Taiwan, Kosovo 
  • '18-'19-Chile, Palestine, Belgium, Austria, Spain, Germany, Italy 


For further information please email Marion Sheridan, Foreign Exchange Student Coordinator

  • OHS works with the local Rotary Club closely on their one-for-one exchange program. As one-for-one program participants, these inbound students are the only to have a reserved space. All application procedures and criteria still apply; however, Rotary student places are "held" as they are filling the roles of our outbound OHS students.