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HomeLanguage Newsnews129 New Chinese Guest Teachers for U.S. Schools

129 New Chinese Guest Teachers for U.S. Schools

Over a hundred new teachers from China are ready to serve in the Chinese Guest Teacher Program, a collaboration between the College Board and China’s Confucius Institute. The program places qualified 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.
“As I extend a warm welcome to our guest teachers, I also want to thank them for helping to bring an understanding of Chinese language and culture to thousands of American students,” said College Board President David Coleman. “This program increases the global awareness of our students and strengthens the ties of friendship and collaboration forged by educators and school communities in both countries.”
The new teachers just completed the STARTALK Chinese Guest Teacher Summer Institute (GTSI), a 10-day pre-service training hosted by the UCLA Confucius Institute. The training 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.
This year, approximately 170 K-12 students from the Los Angeles area also attended a 3-day intensive Chinese language and culture program at University High School, taught by the guest teachers. “We are very excited to be able to enhance the program with this hands-on learning component,” said Susan Pertel Jain, executive director of the UCLA Confucius Institute. “University High School is one of our Confucius classrooms, and the children who participated have been thrilled. It has been a wonderful opportunity to further our mission of expanding global education.”
The teacher training is organized by the College Board in collaboration with the National Council of State Supervisors for Languages (NCSSFL) and UCLA Confucius Institute, and made possible by support from Confucius Institute Headquarters and a grant from STARTALK. STARTALK is one of the projects of the National Security Language Initiative, a multiagency effort to expand foreign language education in critical languages.
Before departing China, the guest teachers attend a six-week training organized by Confucius Institute and College Board. In addition, Confucius Institute Headquarters 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 College Board and Confucius Institute launched the Chinese Guest Teacher Program to support the growth of Chinese education in U.S. schools by staffing Chinese programs with experienced Chinese language teachers. The Program, which is the largest visiting Mandarin teacher program in the U.S., 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 nearly tripled in the years since it was first offered in 2007.
Participation in the Chinese Guest Teacher Program has grown since the first group of 37 teachers arrived in January 2007. This year, 187 teachers will be in service at public and private elementary, middle and high schools across 30 states, with the largest concentration in the states of Utah, North Carolina and Ohio. Since 2007, over 800 guest teachers have served in the program and have reached over 100,000 students.
Bonnie Flint, World Languages supervisor at the Davis School District in Utah described how the teachers have served her community, “Davis School District is a proud participant in the Guest Teacher program. Over the past several years, the addition of Chinese guest teachers has allowed our district to build a strong and growing Chinese program. Our guest teachers teach Chinese in our traditional, secondary programs as well as in our elementary Chinese Immersion programs. These teachers bring enthusiasm, experience, and depth to our programs, but the best part of participating in this program is the priceless knowledge that they are touching the lives and hearts of the children and adults they interact with daily.”
Interested schools can apply to the program for the 2014-15 school year starting in December 2013. More information is available at

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