SAN JOSE (KCBS)— Three lucky students from a South Bay elementary school will meet face to face with their Chinese counterparts through a tech-based exchange program. Email and Skype created the initial bridge for the students.

San Jose’s predominantly Latino Washington Elementary is participating with students and teachers from Hao Chong Elementary in China. The two now have the chance to solidify their special sister-school relationship after years of virtual interactions.

KCBS’ Margie Shafer Reports:

San Jose Rotarian Dennis Fong’s father, who never went to school, built the school in China, that serves three villages, after he came to the United States, worked hard, saved and invested his money. He eventually sold a property with the proceeds going back to his homeland.

“We always call home on Skype. So we thought, let’s see if we can link the schools up. We tried it out and we’re great,” said Fong.

Interactions progressively grew, but it was Skype that allowed the kids to share live performances and build friendships.

The summit goes down later this month, when three students and their teacher pay a visit to Hao Chong Elementary and vice-versa.

Students at both schools were studying English.

“That’s what it’s about. Kids have no grudges, they’re innocent. We’re going to build a better world. We start with kids,” Fong said.

Fundraising efforts are still underway and donations can be made to the San Jose Rotary Club Foundation.

(Copyright 2012 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)


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