Translation:The members are parents, alumni and teachers.
Almost all dictionaries define alumni as meaning graduate or former student -- someone who has graduated from or attended a school.
Schools and alumni organizations in my experience usually count students who attended as a member of a class for a period of time and then left.
They often don't count people who attended a course or even a number of courses as a special student -- someone who is taking a class as an outsider, not as a member of the student body. But that varies from school to school, and often depends on either the school's prestige -- higher prestige schools are much less likely to claim special students as alums -- or the prestige the school will get from claiming *you".
The issue here is of British vs American usage. In standard British English, the word "alumnus/alumna" (plural "alumni") is used almost solely in the sense quis_lib_duo refers to.
It would be extremely rare (if not completely weird) to hear a Brit describe him/herself as an "alumnus/alumna" anything below a university, unless he/she was either being pretetious, or had attended a fee-paying school.
Neither would an American. This isn't a British vs. American usage issue, it's a question of whether graduation or just matriculation is required to be worthy of the title "alumnus/a/i" (this was georgewreid's question). In fact, I think most Americans are more likely to use "graduate" or "grad" than "alumnus."
Strictly speaking, alumni are former students. You can be an alumnus of a school that you never graduated from, but they probably won't let you join the alumni association unless you graduated.
The word is used so frequently to refer to graduates that many people are not aware of the literal meaning.
Couldn't it be "former student and teacher"? Couldn't the plural ehemalige refer to "student and teacher"? And so the members could be parents, a former student, and a former teacher?.. Or parents that are at the same time former student and former teacher? I know it looks stretched when I write it like this, but it's really what I understood.
Esperanto does it like this, but German doesn't -- the plural attributive adjective can't apply to two singular nouns.
"Ich sehe alten Wein und Most", for example, could mean "alten Wein" + "Most" or "alten Wein + alten Most" -- but you wouldn't say "alte Wein und Most".
And with countable nouns such as "Schüler" and "Lehrer", you'd need some kind of determiner as well -- "ein Schüler" or "der Schüler". But then you can't "share" the adjective any more -- "der ehemalige Schüler und Lehrer" or "ein ehemaliger Schüler und Lehrer" would, for me at least, mean "the/a person who was formerly both a student and a teacher" rather than "the/a former student and the/a former teacher".
German comma usage conventions all but forbid the Oxford comma. In any case, why should English-language (let alone Oxonian) style conventions apply to German? (I say this as a fan of the Oxford comma.)
I had the same question as AlmogL, though, which is why I came here. I suppose that when the penultimate item in a list (right before the "und") has an adjective, and the last item (after the "und") doesn't, there will always be this sort of ambiguity; but it could easily be erased by placing the adjective-ized item after the "und," e.g., "Eltern, Lehrer und ehemalige Schüler."
"The colleagues are parents, former schoolchildren and teachers" Alumni are those who underwent higher education. Schueler are children at school. I do wish Duo would learn English and stop trying to corrupt it. Soon alumni will be in nappies as they toddle out of kindergarten. Former pupils was also rejected. Lord preserve us from this butchery inflicted on my language.
The German sentence is not Die Mitglieder sind Eltern, Ehemalige, Schüler und Lehrer. "The members are parents, alumni, students, and teachers" but Die Mitglieder sind Eltern, ehemalige Schüler und Lehrer. "The members are parents, former students (= alumni), and teachers." (Note the presence or absence of comma after (e/E)hemalige.)
ehemalig means "former", and is used as an adjective here to modify Schüler: "former student, former pupil" = alumnus.
If you use the adjective on its own, then it acts like a noun and is capitalised.
(The endings will still act like an adjective, e.g. indefinite Ehemalige but definite die Ehemaligen.)
maybe one day they will get an english data base
I think it is highly unlikely that Duolingo will offer multiple regional versions of a single language (e.g. both US English and UK English, or both European Portuguese and Brazilian Portuguese).
So if you prefer a site that uses UK English to teach German, Duolingo is not the place to look.
No, Schüler is the plural of Schüler which is spelled identically. Schuler doesn't exist.
But "former student" would have to be "ehemaliger Schüler" with -er for masculine nominative singular -- and if you don't identify him (e.g. "ehemaliger Schüler Joachim"), you'd need some kind of determiner as well, e.g. the indefinite or definite article "ein ehemaliger Schüler / der ehemalige Schüler".
i put students on this one
Please always quote your entire answer when you have a question.
Even better: take a screenshot so that we can see what kind of exercise you had and exactly what you wrote in response -- then upload the image to a website somewhere such as imgur and put the URL of the image in your comment here.
Did you, perhaps, have a listening exercise? (Then you should have written in German, not English.)
Or did you, perhaps, write something like "The members are parents, students, and teachers"? (Then you did not translate the word ehemalige "former".)