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Haitian Principal Speaks to Cavs

CHS juniors (L to R) Maddie Cox, Darya Silchenko, Sophie Smith, and sophomore Taylor Gates chat with guest speaker from Haiti Mr. Actionnel Fleurisma.

CHS French students recently received the opportunity to meet and speak with Mr. Actionnel Fleurisma, a visiting K-12 principal from Haiti. Mr. Fleurisma comes from a small mountain town called Bayonnais, where he helped establish the school that now provides an education to more than 2,000 students. The school is called OFCB, the Organization of the Christian Force of Bayonnais, and was started in 1993. Besides being one of the school's four founders, Fleurisma is also a pastor and father of four. Students learned about life in Haiti as well as how students are educated in the town of Bayonnais.

French 4 student Sophie Smith said, “It was awesome! It was very eye-opening seeing how they live and learning about their culture. It’s really different from how much we have and take for granted.”

Not only did Mr. Fleurisma provide some insight into daily Haitian life, but he also provided a chance for the French classes to practice speaking French, since French is one of the national languages in Haiti.

“It was very enjoyable watching the students interact with a native speaker,” said CHS French teacher Heather Buskard. “The upper level students were not inhibited at all. They jumped at the chance to speak with Mr. Fleurisma.”

Several Cuthbertson students have been on mission trips to Haiti, and they enjoyed hearing about the town of Bayonnais, especially since Port-au-Prince, Haiti’s capital, is where many of the mission trips take place. For some students, Mr. Fleurisma’s visit sparked their interest to go back to Haiti. After hearing about life in Bayonnais, sophomore Taylor Gates feels strongly about going back.

“I miss Haiti! I went last summer on a mission trip. First we went to Port-au-Prince, then we drove out to villages to conduct Vacation Bible School,” said Taylor.

The French classes are grateful to Mr. Fleurisma for coming to speak to them, and would also like to thank Ms. Donna Podgorny, the UCPS World Languages Curriculum Coordinator, for arranging Mr. Fleurisma’s visit.

Written by: CHS French teacher Heather Buskard
Posted: Nov 14, 2013 by Paula White

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