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Bridging an international, educational gap

But when the Chinese students were asked what kind of food they eat, they had some fun with the question.

"Chinese food," some shouted.

Dr. Xu Changqun, principal of Tianjin No. 41 High School, was on his first visit to the U.S. He said he views the Tech Valley High School and theirs as "sister schools" and added that technology use has a great effect on a student's studies.

"I think according to the visit to the American education system," he said, "I think we can learn from each other."

A Colonie student who was doing translations for the Chinese students, Linfeng Cao, a senior, had moved to the U.S. from China four years ago. She said she was excited to see so many of the students from China and recalled how different her learning experience over in China was compared to Colonie.

"I really like my classes here," she said. "Teachers in China are more formal. Here, they are more like a friend."

South Colonie Central School District Superintendent Jon Buhner said he was very excited about the visit from the Chinese delegation, saying that it was bridging an international gap between the two countries through its schools.

"We take great pride in the diversity at our school," he said, adding that it's important for the two schools to learn from each other in a changing world economy. "I'm a true believer in getting in a going on a trip and seeing how other people are doing things."

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