On October 21, 2013, Dr. Guo-ou Zhuang, Director of Confucius Institute at the University of Central Arkansas (UCACI), and Dr. Lucy Xiaohong Lu, Deputy Director of UCACI, attended the Arkansas Association of Educational Administrators (AAEA) Conference in Little Rock. Dr. Zhuang introduced the development of Chinese programs and education in Arkansas K-12 schools.
At the Conference Opening Luncheon Session, Mr. Michael Rowland from Arkansas Department of Education (ADE) gave a presentation on the Arkansas-China business relationship and the Teach Chinese in Arkansas program. Mr. Rowland stressed the remarkable enhance in the trade volume between Arkansas and China, as well as China’s emphasis on English education as the necessities to promote Chinese education in Arkansas educational system, in order to prepare Arkansas youth better for the future. Also, he introduced the collaboration of ADE with UCACI since 2008 to strengthen ties and mutual understanding between Arkansas and China. Another important mission of this collaboration is to promote Chinese language and culture with Arkansas through the Teach Chinese in Arkansas program. From the newsletter featuring the development of Chinese programs in current schools made by UCACI, participants got a better understanding about the programs.
Dr. Zhuang then introduced the various programs available for Arkansas students and educators to experience China through a project called Chinese Bridge, such as Summer Camp for American High School Students, Arkansas Educator Group’s Tour to China, Chinese Proficiency Competition, etc. These programs are offered by UCACI and Confucius Institute Headquarters.
Mr. Rowland and Dr. Zhuang’s presentations gave educators from major schools of Arkansas a close understanding of Chinese education and programs in Arkansas, which has a great positive influence on the promotion of Chinese programs in Arkansas.