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John Bapst Plans To Acquire Buildings for International Students Moves Forward 

The faculty and staff at John Bapst Memorial High School say they are committed to opening doors of opportunities to their students.Pretty soon, properties next to the school in Bangor will open their doors to international students.Headmaster Mel Mackay describes the buildings as historic 19th century homes that have been converted. He says the buildings will house students and “host parents,” who are faculty and staff members who live with the students.According to Mackay the school is close to acquiring the buildings for its boarding school program that will begin in August of next year.Currently, the school has 5 international students but by next year, that number could grow to 42.One of those students is Pablo Cabrera. The native of Spain says the buildings will help students find a place to live.”To search for host families is really difficult, so the opportunity to have this building with bedrooms for students I think is a great idea.”Math teacher Brendan Murphy says the foreign exchange program at the private school helps local students and faculty grow, too. “It helps all of our classes open our eyes up, you know there can be a different way to do things and they’ll come right up to the board and do a problem totally different and I’ll say I’ve never seen that before, it’s been a great learning experience.”Min Poulin has been working with Mackay and other school officials to bring Chinese students to Maine. She was impressed by John Bapst’s program and believes the school is moving in the right direction.”It’s an educational philosophy, they prepare students so they can go to a good college.”The school is expected to close on the properties within the next sixty days.