From China to Leland and Gray!

Ms. Xu Xinger from Yuhang High School, and Haley Buffum and Robbie Litchfield, LG students from Jamaica, join a scavenger hunt through the town of Townshend.

Twenty-four students and three administrators from China spent a week in an intensive language and culture summer camp at Leland and Gray. The students, ranging in age from 15 to 17, are part of Leland and Gray’s international program with Yuhang and Yunhe, two “sister-schools” in Zhejiang Province, China.

The students stayed with 14 host families in the communities served by Leland and Gray and interacted on a daily basis with as many as 22 Leland and Gray middle and high school students. The program was designed to provide diverse opportunities for the students to spend time with their American peers, visit local cultural and historical sites, and receive daily English instruction with veteran ESL teacher, Bill Conley, of Dummerston, who was assisted by Vermont Teacher of the Year, Ms. Tong Chen, and Winhall artist, Mr. Paul Molinelli.

Highlights of the program included a welcome banquet barbeque and potluck dinner at the Townshend Dam Recreation Area, a field trip to an organic farm in Brookline and preparation of organic food at the high school, an information session and tour of the University of Massachusetts, an introduction to the college search program led by Leland and Gray counselor Sarah Grasso, a hike to “The Overlook” in the Jamaica State Park, and a Square Dance at the Saxtons River recreation area with music by Jill Newton and the Turkey Mountain Window Smashers.

The program is an important piece in Leland and Gray’s international initiative. Already well known for the Journey East Arts Exchange Program, the high school has been certified by the Department of Homeland Security and has enrolled two Chinese tuition-paying students for the upcoming school year.

For more information on Leland and Gray’s international focus, please contact Mr. Tom Connor, at or 802-874-4266 (home) or 802-380-8232 (mobile)