On Monday, Mayor Steve Bach will welcome a group of visiting English teachers from Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, which is one of Colorado Springs’ six Sister Cities.
The mayor will present the teachers a small gift during a meet and greet in the mayor’s office, the city announced Friday.
“The primary purpose of the trip is for young, educational leaders from Kyrgyzstan to visit our country to observe and study our educational system, including K-12 curriculum, distant learning methods and the use of online programs to enhance education, and to establish a virtual classroom experience between schools in Kyrgyzstan and Colorado Springs such as being “pen pals” via SKYPE,” the city said in a press release.
“To that end, the visiting teachers will be meeting with many Colorado Springs schools from elementary to university level. The visitors will also be enjoying ‘homestays’ with Colorado Springs host families so that they can experience our culture and daily life,” the city said.
Zdravstvuite, by the way, means “Hello” for the Kyrgyzstan people.
But Bach may not need to learn how to pronounce it because all the teachers apparently speak English, a city spokesman said.
Bach recently welcomed a group of youth from Fujiyoshida, Japan, another Sister City.
Here’s more information directly from the city’s press release:
Colorado Springs and Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan have been Sister Cities since 1994. This visit is funded by the Open World Leadership Center in Washington D.C., which seeks “to enhance understanding and capabilities for cooperation between the United States and the countries of Eurasia by developing a network of leaders in the region who have gained significant, firsthand exposure to America’s democratic, accountable government and its free-market system.
Bishkek, capitol of Kyrgyzstan, is one of the most beautiful and progressive cities in Central Asia. It is the nation’s capital and is located along the ancient Silk Road. This city of 800,000 people at the base of the Tien Shan mountain range has a climate similar to that of Colorado Springs. Bishkek is a film industry hub and has vast capacities for industry and mining, as well as tourism and recreation.
Sister Cities are formed to develop friendly and meaningful exchanges involving citizens and organizations in both communities engaging in projects of mutual interest. Colorado Springs has six Sister Cities: Bankstown, Australia; Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan; Fujiyoshida, Japan; Kaohsiung, Taiwan; Nuevo Casas Grandes, Mexico; Smolensk, Ukraine.