Originally Answered: How many foreign exchange students are allowed to line in one house and are they allowed to babysit your kids?
OK .. this is a very loaded question.
First, is she a representative for the organization and is she listed as the permanent family or just an arrival family? If she is a representative, chances are good she got paid to bring these kids in (very few are volunteer only),
However, it is quite common for a representative to have several students at the beginning of the year as often times permanent host families might be on vacation or unable to take their student on the day he/she arrives.
If it is an arrival (temporary) situation then she could have that many. But if it's a permanent placement then the parents of both students must agree to it IN WRITING as well as the USIA.
This is according to the USIA 514.25
"(l) Host family placement. (1) Sponsors
shall secure, prior to the student’s departure
from the home country, a host
family placement for each student participant.
Sponsors shall not:
(i) Facilitate the entry into the United
States for a student for whom a host
family placement has not been secured;
(ii) Place more than one student with
a host family without the express prior
written consent of the Agency."
USIA has VERY DEFINITE rules on host families and exchange students. In general, they cannot work in any capacity that requires a Social Security Number. However, they are permitted to work up to 10 hours a week in such things as babysitting, tutoring, lawn mowing, etc. They can also do a REASONABLE amount of babysitting if it is considered a weekly chore. This is a very gray area as you can see.
If you truly have concerns, and this is not just a matter of families not getting along, you can contact the Council on Standards for International Educational Travel. They are a monitoring agency for exchange programs certified to operate in the U.S.
Having worked with exchange students for so many years, I find stories like this quite disturbing -- if true, not good for the students, which is of paramount importance. If not true, not good for the programs.
I hope this is just a momentary spat and nothing more serious. However, if it IS just a spat between wife and ex-wife, it is not responsible to bring in the exchange students.
You also didn't note the stepson's age. If it was a child it's one thing, but did she "throw out" an adult who could be on his own anyway?
EDIT: My answer applies to SECONDARY (high school) students, not college ones.