April 11, 2017
At BCATML's Celebrating Languages Conference 2016, we announced that the Student Exchange and Mobility Awards (SEMA) are available for high school students to study abroad and encourages BC students to develop intercultural skills and competencies. Full details and criteria for this award are found on the Ministry's website.
Presently, the SEMA Awards are available for travel to China, France, Italy and Japan. BCATML has lobbied the Ministry (K-12 International Education) to pursue memoranda agreements with the Ministries of Education for Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Spain, Latin America and India in addition to maintaining the current list of eligible countries. In so doing, BCATML believes that the Ministry of Education will further assist and support students’ pursuit of languages and cultures in becoming better global educated citizens, which is one of the underpinning philosophies and principles in the redesigned second languages curricula.
On April 24th, 2017, Dwayne Cover (Provincial Lead - K-12 International Education) responded to BCATML's letter indicating that the Ministry has received our letter and that he would be pleased to forward our request to the incoming government once the writs of election have been returned and the Minister of Education has been appointed. BCATML is quite happy and excited about this opportunity to expand the SEMA Awards and to support our students of German, Punjabi and Spanish.
BCATML will follow up with the Ministry of Education after the May 2017 elections and report to members at BCATML's Annual General Meeting during the PSA Super Conference this fall at the Vancouver Convention Centre between October 20-21, 2017.
BCATML will also share this letter to members of SCOLA (Standing Committee On Language Articulation) at their Annual General Meeting and seek their support in this initiative.
Email response from Dwayne Cover:
From: Cover, Dwayne <Dwayne.Cover@gov.bc.ca>
Mon 4/24, 3:51 pm
PSA 51 Council Member - BCATML
To Mr. Rome Lavrencic,
Thank you for your letter dated Tuesday, April 11, 2017, regarding the Student Exchange and Mobility Awards. As you are aware, the Government of British Columbia is currently in a transition period due to the general election scheduled for May 9, 2017. I would be pleased to take your issue forward to the incoming government once the writs of election have been returned and the Minister of Education has been appointed.
Again, thank you for writing.
Provincial Lead – K-12 International Education
B.C. Ministry of Education
Tel: (778) 676-7578