Prince Charles tours school, veterans' home in U.S. visit

  • World
  • Friday, 20 Mar 2015

Britain's Prince Charles (C), Prince of Wales, throws a bowling ball as he and his wife Camilla (L), Duchess of Cornwall, pay a visit to the Armed Forces Retirement Home in Washington, March 19 2015. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Britain's Prince Charles visited a school for immigrant students and toured a Washington veterans retirement home on Thursday as part of his U.S. goodwill tour with wife Camilla.

The four-day visit by the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall aims to boost British-American partnership in such areas as climate change and encouraging corporate social responsibility. It includes a visit with President Barack Obama and a stop in Louisville, Kentucky.

Students carrying small U.S. and British flags lined the hallways of the Carlos Rosario Public Charter School, which teaches adult immigrants, to greet the 66-year-old heir to the British throne.

"Sorry I've come to ruin your session," the prince told teacher Karina Samuels when he walked into her classroom, which had mostly Spanish-speaking and Ethiopian students learning English.

He then visited with groups of students, asking them if they were learning a lot and how long they had been in the United States. Most had very little English, and teachers had to translate many exchanges with the prince.

Charles, who visited the school without Camilla, made the students laugh several times by asking whether their teacher is good. He told the group, "English not easy" and "Lots of practice."

The visit to the school came after Charles and Camilla toured the Armed Forces Retirement Home. The sprawling campus has about 450 residents and is also the site of President Abraham Lincoln's summer cottage.

The couple chatted with residents, stopped at a display of military uniforms and greeted veterans working out in the gym.

The royal couple are scheduled to meet Obama and Vice President Joseph Biden later on Thursday, the first White House visit by Charles since May 2011.

Charles and Camilla arrived on Tuesday evening and toured Washington sites on Wednesday. The couple travel on Friday to Louisville, Kentucky.

(The pool of reporters covering the royal visit of which Ian Simpson of Reuters is a member wrote this story)

(Writing by Ian Simpson; Editing by Eric Beech)

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