HOST FAMILY Q&A
Q: Do I need to give my student an allowance?
A: No, this is considered a student’s personal expense and the host family does not need to give the student any allowance.
Q: Can my student share a room with another student?
A: No, we require each student to have his/her own individual room. There are rare exceptions to this rule and usually only apply to returning students who have a stronger foundation in English.
Q: Is the student responsible for keeping his/her room clean?
A: Yes, the student should help maintain the cleanliness of his/her bedroom to a reasonable standard.
Q: Can I ask my student to help with chores and other household activities?
A: Yes. We actually recommend a moderate level of chores for each student because they are a part of the family, and it is a part of American family life.
Q: Do you have any specific regulations on the size of the bedroom?
A: No, there are not any specific requirements for bedroom size. However, we do look for a reasonably-sized bedroom with a closet, a desk for study, a standard bed, and wireless internet.
Can the student bring friends home to stay overnight, or stay overnight at a friend’s home?
A: The student must discuss this with the host family as it is at the host family’s discretion. The host family can also discuss this with ACEE’s counselors before making a decision.
Q: If I take my family and my international student to a place like Disneyland, do I need to pay for their travel and tickets?
A: For all types of travel initiated by the host family, the student is responsible for their own share of the expenses, if they choose to go. An alternative is to contact ACEE to arrange a temporary host family while you are on vacation so there are no interruptions in the student’s stay.
Q: If we are a religious family, can we bring the student to religious services?
A: Yes, we suggest that students have the opportunity to see different lifestyles. Often, the school that the student attends will also strongly recommend this.
Q: Do you provide medical insurance for students?
A: Yes, every ACEE student has medical insurance. A copy of the insurance card is mailed to each host family. Additional copies are available upon request.
Q: If I need to pick up my student from the airport and the airport is a far distance from my home, will ACEE provide compensation?
A: Yes, ACEE will provide monetary assistance depending on the circumstances of travel.
Q: Do I need to transport the student to and from school?
A: Yes, the host family is responsible for the student’s transportation to and from school.
Q: Are there any time restrictions regarding student’s internet, phone, and TV use?
A: ACEE does not designate specific time limits; however, ACEE supports the enforcement of such limits if the student’s grades or other responsibilities suffer as a result of abuse of these privileges.
Q: What happens in the event of an unexpected need to terminate the housing contract?
A: ACEE works with all host families to help resolve conflicts. If the need for termination arises, please contact ACEE to discuss the circumstances. ACEE requires a written explanation 15 days prior to the termination. This explanation may be sent via email.
Q: What is the policy regarding students obtaining a driver’s license?
A: We generally discourage students from obtaining a driver’s license during their studies; however, this is dealt with on a case-by-case basis. The host family is under absolutely no obligation to provide any vehicle .
Q: If the student stays with my family less than a month, how is the rate determined?
A: We will pay the host family a daily rate which directly corresponds to the regular monthly rate.
Q: If students go back to their home country during the summer or winter, will I be paid while they are away?
A: Per the ACEE homestay agreement, the host family will not be paid for any student leave over 3 consecutive days, which includes both summer and winter holidays.
Q: Will I have a representative, homestay coordinator, or any other kind of support here in the local area?
A: If you have any questions or issues, you can contact us directly, and ACEE’s education counselors will be able to further assist you.
Q: Am I allowed to host two students at the same time?
A: No, unfortunately we are not able to place two students in one host family. We do not object if our families host additional students; however, we strive to have only one Chinese student per household in order to ensure that the communication language in the home is always English.
Q: Will I be required to attend any organized gatherings like parties, outings, or other activities?
A: There are no requirements regarding these activities; it all depends on different host families’ lifestyles and habits. We suggest including parent/teacher conferences or making it another question .
Q: Will I be picking up the student from the airport or will he/she be brought to my home?
A: Depending on your location and circumstances, you may need to pick up your student from the airport.
Q: Culturally, what will be expected of me? I understand I am to treat the student as if he/she were my own child, giving him or her new and different experiences and maintaining a stable home environment for schooling, but what else is expected? Trips to San Francisco or Sacramento? Outings such as skiing, snowboarding, overnight trips, or museums?
A: We appreciate you treating our students as you would your own children. You are under no obligation, but you may ask the student to join any activities without any responsibility to pay for your student.
Q: Can the student be left home alone if he/she does not wish to attend religious services or a family outing like camping, family reunion, etc.?
A: If the student is not willing to attend religious services or other family activities, you may need to drop him/her off at another host family nearby, or have an adult stay at home with student. This is at the family’s discretion. Most of the time, we encourage our students to join the host family’s events and respect their wishes.
Q: Will you require me to keep a record of how much money is spent on the student?
A: You don’t need to keep a record of how money is spent. We will pay you a standard rate by check once a month.
Q: Do I need to provide three meals a day for the student?
A: No, actually each host family provides just two meals to their student on weekdays: breakfast and dinner. Students will eat lunch at school each day. Host families are responsible for providing three meals on weekends. Q: What kinds of meals do I need to provide?
It is not necessary to learn how to cook Chinese food; we encourage our students to learn how to appreciate all kinds of different food. We will inform the host family of any food allergies the student may have.
Q: If our family wants to go out for a meal, do we include our international student?
A: In every facet, we encourage families to treat their international student as one of their own. With that in mind, open communication with students is very important. In advance of going out to eat, invite your student and discuss payment with him/her. Families may treat the student to a meal or the student may pay his/her own way.
Q: We had a bad experience as a host family in the past and our previous student never wanted to eat with us at dinner time. How can we handle this situation?
A: We educate ACEE students to respect each family’s dinner time and unique house rules. We recommend the host family to set up a fixed dinner time and ask the student to follow the house rules. We want to encourage the students to learn how to interact with each family member, especially at the dinner table.
Q: My previous host student rarely spoke with us during dinner time but played on his phone instead. What should we say or do?
A: ACEE’s international host family policy states that students may not use electronic devices (laptop, iPad, iPhone, etc.) at the dining table. It is important to maintain quality time with the family.
Q: Is the student allowed to use the kitchen to cook his/ her own food?
A: We suggest you discuss this with each student; if your family does not want your international student to use the kitchen, it should be discussed openly in the beginning of the student’s stay.
Q: I don’t want to be treated as a maid to cook for the student beyond dinner time, how can I avoid this?
A: The student should eat with the host family and should not ask the host mother or father to cook dinner separately to suit the student’s schedule. If the student has missed dinner time, we suggest preparing the dinner and having the student microwave the food by himself/herself.
Q: Do I need to take my student shopping?
A: Yes, sometimes the student will need some snacks, food, school supplies, or toiletries for themselves or for school projects.
Q： Can my international student go out at night?
A: Yes, but because our students are all high school students and are under 18 years of age, their safety is priority. As the student’s legal guardian, the host family is responsible for where each student goes and who the student is with at night.
Q: Do I need to check my student’s homework?
A: This is not required, but we fully appreciate any family becoming involved in, providing assistance on, or checking the student’s homework.
Q: Do I need to write emails to ACEE to report on the student?
A: We care about our students and host families experience! We greatly appreciate any host family taking the initiative to contact us by email or by phone to keep us updated. Our education counselors are available to assist when needed.
Q: How often will ACEE contact me regarding my international student?
A: ACEE will contact you by phone or email at least once every month.