A teacher from Kentucky on leave to study in South America is safe after riding out the 8.8 earthquake that rocked Chile.

28-year-old Erin Grace, who teaches at North Oldham County High School, rode out the earthquake in a courtyard in Concepcion, where she was dancing on Saturday morning when the earth shook.

Her father, Tom Grace of Westport, told the paper his daughter is studying applied linguistics at Universidad de Concepcion on a Prospect/Goshen Rotary Club scholarship.

Tom Grace and his wife, Vickey, spent a tense day until they finally got through to Erin on her cell phone at about 3 p.m.

Erin Grace went to a frame house on the outskirts of Concepcion that belongs to her roommate's grandparents.

Erin Grace arrived in Chile in August and is due back in Kentucky in July. Her parents are considering asking her to return earlier.