Frequent Asked Questions
If we put a request to host are we guaranteed to get a student?
If you put a request to host a student you will most probably get one, as most families with teenage children fulfill our requirements.
Do we need to have our own children?
The idea is that a student comes over and attends school with a child from the family matched by age, gender, interests etc. However, there are times when a child can be placed in one home and attends school with a child from another school so you would need to tell us about this and we would see if we can still place a child with you.
Can we host more than 1 student?
As a general rule we only place one child in each home but their maybe occasions where it’s better to place a second child within the home, but only when it’s a good solution.
What sort of things are we expected to do with the students?
They are here to be immersed into the British way of life so mostly they join in the normal family routine. However, it’s nice for them to experience typical English things so most families like to do some extra activities while they here and it makes the period of time they are here more enjoyable for everyone. Some typical things are Blackpool, Alton Towers, meals out etc. We provide a list of idea’s if you are chosen as a host family to help with this.
Who pays for bus fares, school dinners?
Student Link will provide an extra allowance to cover the bus to school when necessary. Schools meals must be paid by the family out of the allowance or provide a packed lunch for the student every day (there might be exceptions, please, do not hesitate to ask).
What if they have special dietary needs and the food costs more?
Student Links will cover the extra cost.
How do the children get to and from the airport?
You are expected to make suitable arrangements to collect and drop of the child. The pick up and drop off maybe at a meeting point rather than going to the airport. The details will be given to you if you are chosen as a host family. The allowance forms part of this commitment, if you are unable to do this you will be expected to cover additional costs of getting them there.
What if they get sick while they are here?
They are covered by our NHS service while they are here. You will not be asked for any paperwork at the doctors or the hospital and the students will be taking their European Health Card, which entitles them to health care in the UK. If they become sick you would be expected to take them to the doctor as you would your own child. In the unlikely event of more urgent medical attention you would be expected to take them to the hospital. In both instances you would also be expected to notify your Student Coordinator at the earliest time.
What rules are there around going out, bed times etc?
The child is treated the same as yours and they should be expected to abide by them whilst staying with you.
What if I am having problems that I need support with?
If it’s not an emergency then you can contact the Student Coordinator within working hours, Monday to Friday 9am till 5pm and week-ends 10am – 4pm. If it is an emergency then you can contact the coordinator any day or time.
Are we expected to cook Spanish food?
No! They are here to experience everything English so the more you can give them the better, bangers and mash are perfect! Of course they are just typical children so there maybe things they don’t like. You will learn about this as you go along, it’s all part of the experience.
There is a period of time when they are here that I can’t host, can I still be considered?
Yes, we can usually come to some arrangement where they stay with another host family for those few days but we will need to know, as your allowance will need to be adjusted and paid to the other family.
We have a holiday booked so we won’t be here right up to the end, can we still be considered?
Yes, the answer is the same as question 10.
We plan to go away for a few days can we take the student with us?
Yes, that’s all part of the experience, they will benefit from seeing somewhere different. You will need to let your Student Coordinator know in advance.
Do we need a CRB check? (It’s now called a DBS).
If you have a check already that helps us know you are a suitable family. We don’t have the facility to check every member of every family but we do work closely with the schools to make sure we are putting the child in a safe and happy environment. We also visit each family to make sure the home is suitable, as you would expect if it was your own child.
I know someone who wants to host what do they do?
Ask them to visit our website and put an Expression of Interest in, if they mention your name you will receive £50!
Do the students get together while they are here and is it allowed?
We arrange a get together during the four weeks so they can socialise and relax. Details will be given before the visit. Otherwise, ideally they should only spend time with English speaking friends so they learn more… Exceptionally, we recommend in some cases more contact with other children from the group (brothers and sisters, young children…).
When do I get my allowance?
We pay the allowance around the mid-point of the students’ stay. We can pay a small advance if families wish after the first week to cover any initial costs as some families like to do activities the first week-end the students are here and this helps with that. Please let us know if this is the case.
What if for some reason things don’t work out or something happens and the child has to be moved to another family?
In the unlikely event of this occurring the Student Coordinator will collect the child from your home. The allowance for the days the child is no longer in the home will have to be returned as this payment will have to be transferred to the new home.
We home school can we still host a family?
Yes, as long as the student is kept busy for a reasonable part of the day that it’s ok. We sometimes find home schooling opens them up to more experiences than a normal school.
What happens to them when my child goes to school?
They will attend school with your child. If your child’s school hasn’t been involved with Student Links before we will provide a letter for you to give to the school asking permission for the Spanish child to attend with your child during their stay. The school can then visit our website and call us for more details if they wish.
Will someone come to visit us at home?
Yes, the Student Coordinator will visit your home before you are considered as a host family, it forms part of our checks. . We can have as many as a 100 families so visiting everyone while the student is here would not be possible, however, the coordinator will call you to check everything is ok. Of course if there is an issue we will visit you if needed.
Does the student have to have their own bedroom?
No, but they do have to have their own bed and enough room to be comfortable. It’s a good idea to explain to both children that they can have some time apart and don’t have to live in each other’s pockets. This helps them have some alone time…