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Competitiveness / Health



Move for Swedish pupils to learn Chinese

Monday, 03 December 2012
The Swedish government has now taken the first step towards introducing Chinese - or Mandarin - as a modern language in Swedish schools. All students should be able to choose if they want to take the language as a subject or not.

Education Minister, Jan Björklund (Liberal Party) says that China's importance is growing in all areas as such Sweden should be ready to benefit from that growth.
"China is the world's largest country and it is growing rapidly in importance economically and probably also, as a result of it, culturally. And in the next generation, we believe that Chinese will be a more important language," said Jan Björklund to radio Sweden.

"It will take a long time (for implementation) because if we are able to offer Chinese in all Swedish secondary schools and most of the secondary schools, so we need many teachers. And they must be trained."

Björklund went further to say that universities need to educate the educators of these teachers something he estimates to take 10-15 years before it is implemented in full in the Swedish school system.
The government on Thursday made a policy move to give the National Agency for Education the power to adjust course and topic plans for Mandarin as modern language. The Agency will include a trade-off between the oral and the written, because the Chinese character system is considered more difficult to learn compared to other modern languages.
By Team

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