Frequently Asked Questions
I want to come with my friend/brother/sister – can we stay in the same host family?
No, sorry – everyone staying in a host family has a different mother tongue, to encourage everyone to speak English.
When will I know who my host family is?
We will work out the host families in June, as only then will we know everyone's language, age, sex and interests.
If there are still a lot of applications coming in, it may take up to the end of June to organise the host families, but you should know details of your family by the beginning of July. If there are still spaces after the host families have been allocated, you may apply, but we may not be able to accommodate all your requests as regards the host family (being near a friend, for example), and you will only be able to come if there is a space in an appropriate family (so you are sharing a room with someone of the same sex, but of a different mother tongue).
When do I pay the host family money?
The host family fee is paid to us, together with the tuition and course fees and we will pay the host families.
How do I know that my payment has reached you?
Once we have received your payment as well as all necessary application documents (completed and signed Enrolment Form, Parental Consent Form, Financial Agreement, a copy of your child’s passport, an up-to-date portrait photo of your child) via email, we will send you a letter confirming your child’s place on our Summer Language School course stating the exact payment we have received from you. Please make sure your child carries this letter of confirmation along with the passport (stated on the letter) when travelling to Devon in July as it might become useful for customs. Please note that it is important to also send the original documents (completed and signed Enrolment Form, Parental Consent Form, Financial Agreement, a copy of your child’s passport, 2 up-to-date passport-sized photos of your child) via post in June, as we will need the documents latest by the beginning of July to ensure your child can participate in all activities and join the trips.
The cheapest flight for me arrives a day earlier / leaves a day later than your arrival and departure dates – what shall I do?
As long as you tell us when your flight dates are, we will make sure you get a host family who can accommodate your travel arrangements. The accommodation fees are for the dates shown – extra nights are payable at £30 per night (this additional fee only is paid directly to the host family on arrival and to us, along with the overnight accommodation fee for the Youth Hostel in London, for departure). Sometimes you may have to stay with a different host family for the extra nights when arriving early.
Can I pay the fees in Euros?
No, sorry – as the exchange rate fluctuates so often, we can only accept payment in pounds sterling. If it is cheaper at your bank to pay in euros, you may estimate how many euros you need to pay. We will then tell you how much arrives in pounds, and the difference can be paid to us or refunded to you at the beginning of the course.
How much pocket money should I give my child?
All their food and accommodation is paid for, so they don't actually NEED any money to be here. However, it is nice for them to have some money to spend on snacks and souvenirs, or to do things with their friends on their days off. It is always difficult to put a sum to it, as it depends on your individual financial situation. To give you an idea, a cinema ticket is about £10, a cool drink in a restaurant is up to £5 or £2 in the supermarket, a bus fare is £3, a sandwich is between £3 and £6, and ice cream is about £3. To buy and post a postcard will cost between £2 and £4. It should also be noted that we can't be responsible for keeping your child's money safe for them. You know how responsible they are with money, so please judge how much to give them based on that. If your child has a bank account with a bank card, they will be able to access it here, but they may not be able to get to a bank before the first weekend of the course. Please ensure, that you provide enough pocket money for your child. In case they are likely to need more, please provide a bank card so that they can withdraw money. It is not possible to transfers pocket money into the SLS bank account!
For the weekend trip to London:
The travel to and in London is paid for and food is provided for all days. We will join a London Street Art Tour and a River Thames Boat Trip which is paid for. Other attractions the students wish to visit will need to be paid for. These can be up to £30 or more for an entrance. It may be useful to look online with your child at what sorts of things he/she might be keen to do in London, and based on that, allocate money for that trip.
What does my child need to bring for the camp weekend?
We will send a detailed packing list of things to bring to Devon for the course, including the camp weekend, latest by June. As we will be camping in our canvas bell tents or indoors, if the weather does not allow camping out, students need to bring a camping mat and a sleeping bag. Sometimes, host families are able to provide a sleeping bag and camping mat but you would need to check with your host family as they are hosting more than one student; it might be that they don’t have enough sleeping bags or camping mats for all students. Please also bring a day bag for hikes, excursions and for the camp weekend.