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More than 20 Japanese students got a realistic look at the public educational system during a recent visit to Pioneer Valley High School.

The students, who were from Aomari, arrived on Nov. 29 and left Dec. 4. They attended classes, made new friends, enjoyed American food, spent time with host families and got to know Santa Maria.

“This was our chance to meet people our age from Japan and to learn how different things are in other countries – and how they are alike,’’ said junior Kailey Anaya.

Senior Alicia Lopez agreed, adding, “We got pretty close in a short time and I already miss my buddy.’’

The experience marked the fourth year the event was hosted by the PV Student Council, according to Activity Director Lisa Walters.

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