Bravi! Fondazione Italia was your Totally Awesome pick for the best kids language classes in the L.A. area and it’s easy to see why. Dedicated to promoting the Italian language and culture throughout Southern California, this fantastic non-profit organization is a favorite among kids who enjoy the fun and educational atmosphere of a Fondazione class. With all kinds of great programming, classes, and events, Fondazione Italia should be on your family’s radar.

Executive Director Hilary Stern recently took the time to chat with us about what makes Fondazione Italia so awesome, her proudest moment during her work for Fondazione Italia, and more. Read on:

Red Tricycle: Your community recently voted you “Most Awesome” – what do your customers value most about your business?

Hilary Stern: What sets Fondazione Italia apart from other language schools is that we listen to what our families and students needs are and then make it our goal to bring them what they want in a language course. We offer Italian language courses to all age ranges from toddlers to adults. That includes, among our many course offerings, a “Parent & Me” structured Italian class and a class for 4 to 6 year olds, which is an age range neglected by most language schools. We believe that language acquisition should start young and be developed in a fun and interactive setting! Recently, in response to a demand we saw in the community, we began offering courses to prepare students for the AP Italian Language and Culture exam if their high schools don’t offer Italian as a foreign language elective. In addition, we collaborate with and help organize events around town that are family friendly and celebrate Italian culture.

RT: What inspired you to start your business?

HS: We wanted to bring Italian language and culture to students of all ages.

RT: Any advice for new business owners just getting started?

HS: Be passionate about what you are doing!

RT: What is your proudest moment as a business owner?

HS: We pride ourselves on our student retention rate and are always so thrilled when we see students go from knowing no Italian to being able to understand and respond to us in Italian! We also love to hear stories from parents who travel to Italy on vacation or go there to visit relatives, and are so pleased that their children are able to communicate in Italian.

RT: Is there a special offer you’d like to include for Red Tricycle readers?

HS: Yes! Contact us and mention Red Tricycle to receive an additional $20 off our course fee (new students only).

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