NEW YORK — The College Board today (July 23) welcomed over one hundred new teachers from China who will serve in the Chinese Guest Teacher Program, a collaboration of the College Board and China’s Hanban/Confucius Institute Headquarters (Hanban). The program places visiting teachers from China at schools in the U.S. for one to three years, in order to jump-start or expand school Chinese language and culture programs. Starting today, the group of new teachers, the seventh group participating in the program, will attend a 10-day professional development and cultural orientation at UCLA before they travel to their host schools.
Under President Gaston Caperton’s leadership, the College Board and Hanban launched the Chinese Guest Teacher Program to support the growth of Chinese education in U.S. schools by staffing Chinese programs with qualified, experienced Chinese language teachers. The Chinese Guest Teacher Program also helps to build a solid foundation for the Advanced Placement Program® Chinese Language and Culture course. Participation in AP® Chinese Language and Culture has more than doubled in the years since it was first offered in 2007.
“I am incredibly proud to hail the latest group of Chinese Guest Teachers and the Chinese Guest Teacher Program, which has helped bring Chinese language and culture to thousands of American youths, many of them traditionally underserved. At the College Board, we strongly believe that familiarity with Chinese language and culture will be critical to America’s economic and political future, and the stronger our ties are with the people of China, the more peaceful and prosperous the world will be,” said College Board President Gaston Caperton.
Participation in the Chinese Guest Teacher Program has grown since the first group of 37 teachers arrived in January 2007. This year, 172 teachers will be in service at approximately 246 elementary, middle and high schools across 31 states, with the largest concentration in the states of Ohio, Utah and North Carolina. Since 2007, almost 700 guest teachers have served in the program and reached over 100,000 students.
Bernice Stokes, assistant superintendent of Shaker Heights City School District in Ohio, described how the teachers have served her community, “What a wonderful way to strengthen the bonds between two countries and their people. We are in our seventh year of the program and have been pleased with all of the teachers that have been assigned to our school district. The guest teachers have become an integral part of the staff, and we've learned so much from them.” Interested schools can apply to the program for the 2013-14 school year starting in December 2012. More information is available at www.collegeboard.com/guestteacher.
Starting today, the Chinese guest teachers will participate in the STARTALK Chinese Guest Teacher Summer Institute (GTSI), a 10-day preservice training hosted by the UCLA Confucius Institute. Organized by the College Board in collaboration with the National Council of State Supervisors for Languages (NCSSFL) and UCLA Confucius Institute, the institute covers such topics as the structure of U.S. K–12 education, K–12 foreign language teaching standards, communication strategies, course design, classroom management and materials development. The institute is made possible by support from Hanban and a grant from STARTALK, which is one of the projects of the National Security Language Initiative, a multiagency effort to expand foreign language education in undertaught critical languages.
“The Guest Teacher Summer Institute is a very positive experience for our campus and community,” said Susan Jain, executive director of the UCLA Confucius Institute. “Each year we gather a distinguished team of K-12 teacher trainers from across the United States for this program, supporting a core mission of the UCLA Confucius Institute. It’s also wonderful to be with the Guest Teachers when they enter their first American classroom and to watch them view their first Pacific sunset. It is truly an inspiring experience for everyone involved.”
In addition, Hanban organizes a six-week training before the teachers depart, provides the teachers with international transportation and partially subsidizes the guest teachers’ salaries to lessen the costs to host schools and districts. As part of the selection process, the College Board and NCSSFL interview guest teachers individually to assess teaching skills, adaptability and English proficiency. NCSSFL collaborates with the College Board to provide training and support for the teachers and the Institute of International Education serves as the visa sponsor for the program.
The Chinese Guest Teacher Program is part of the Chinese Language & Culture Initiatives, a collaboration of the College Board and Hanban. One of these initiatives, the Chinese Bridge Delegation, has enabled approximately 3,000 U.S. educators to visit China to observe schools and cultural sites, participate in workshops and meet with Chinese and U.S. educators to form educational ties. Additionally, the College Board, in conjunction with Asia Society, co-organizes the National Chinese Language Conference, which is the largest annual gathering on Chinese language teaching and learning in North America.
Chinese is the national language of the more than 1.3 billion inhabitants of China and millions more ethnic Chinese around the globe, and is the most widely spoken first language in the world. As of August 2010, China’s economy has surpassed Japan's and become the second-largest economy in the world behind the U.S.
About the College Board
The College Board is a mission-driven not-for-profit organization that connects students to college success and opportunity. Founded in 1900, the College Board was created to expand access to higher education. Today, the membership association is made up of over 6,000 of the world’s leading educational institutions and is dedicated to promoting excellence and equity in education. Each year, the College Board helps more than seven million students prepare for a successful transition to college through programs and services in college readiness and college success — including the SAT® and the Advanced Placement Program®. The organization also serves the education community through research and advocacy on behalf of students, educators and schools. For further information, visit www.collegeboard.org.
Leslie Sepuka 212-713-8052 email@example.com