Chinese Aid Boosts Mandarin-Language Instruction in U.S.
With China’s growing power and influence on the global stage, efforts are burgeoning to promote teaching the official Chinese language in U.S. schools. And while those activities are getting help from a variety of sources—including the U.S. government—one key player taking an increased role is the Chinese government itself.
Just this year, the Office of Chinese Language Council International—or Hanban , an affiliate of China’s Ministry of Education—committed millions of dollars to help launch several ventures with U.S. schools, including a program in North Carolina to offer Mandarin Chinese classes in 45 public schools and the development of a national network of 100 “exemplary” Chinese-language programs at the K-12 level.
“It’s a great opportunity,” William C. Harrison, who chairs the North Carolina state board of education, said of his state’s program, to which China is expected to supply more than $5 million in direct aid and “in kind” services. “The best way to become globally competitive is to develop an understanding of those with whom you compete, being able to communicate with them, and being able...
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