The Future Leaders Exchange Program (FLEX) in Ukraine will hold entrance testing for the 2019-2020 academic year beginning September 2018. FLEX is a program of the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs of the United States Department of State, is administered by American Councils for International Education: ACTR/ACCELS (American Councils) and supported by the Ministry of Education of Ukraine. The program provides Ukrainian high school students with an opportunity to study in U.S. high schools and live in American families for one academic year.
This year more than 30 test centers are expected in Ukraine. Recruiters travel to each test center to hold recruiting activities. 8th, 9th and 10th form Ukrainian students born from January 1, 2002 through July 15, 2004 are invited to test at the test center most convenient for them. Testing at more than one location, and testing more than once at the same location, is grounds for disqualification from the program.
Physically challenged students currently in 8th – 12th form and born from February 15, 2001 through July 15, 2004, are also invited to test where convenient, but will be in competition only with each other. To participate in Round One students need to appear at a specific date, time and location that are announced through mailings to Ukrainian schools and through media advertising.
Students may also find the schedule on American Councils’ website or may contact the Kyiv office to inquire about testing in their region. The recruiting process begins in each test center with a general informational presentation and the administering of the Pretest. The Pretest is a short written test of Basic English. Results of Round One in a test center are typically available the same day after the last Pretests are given.
Those candidates who pass to Round Two will write an in-class essay on three assigned topics. Round Two is typically held the day after Round One. All Round Two materials are evaluated by an international selection committee in Washington, DC.
Within 3-6 weeks after Round Two, recruiters return to conduct Round Three activities with those students selected by the international committee. These activities include a meeting with candidates and one of their parents or guardians. During this meeting, candidates receive the applications and each page is explained in detail to students and their parents by Program staff. Candidates have two weeks from the date of the meeting to complete and return their applications to the Kyiv office of American Councils. Following the meeting, candidates write a second in-class essay on assigned topics and take a standardized test of English Reading and Listening Comprehension. Additionally, recruiters conduct group activities with groups of 5-8 participants, followed by individual interviews in English and the students’ native language.
After applications are received from all candidates in a test center, Round Three documents are sent to Washington, DC for the selection committee to review. Results of the competition are expected in April. Although there are no available estimates of the number of candidates to be selected in 2019, there were more than 230 finalists selected in 2018. Once results are released, finalists and alternates prepare necessary documents for their U.S. visa and school registration. All finalists are required to attend a Pre-Departure Orientation in June or July. Finalists selected in April 2019 depart for the United States in August 2019 and return to Ukraine in May and June 2020.