TROY - Troy University and Troy City Schools officials today inked a partnership to provide a Confucius Classroom at Charles Henderson Middle School, making it the first regular public school in the state to carry the designation.
Under the partnership, the Confucius Institute at Troy University, Alabama's only such center with a statewide mission, will provide instruction in the Mandarin Chinese language and in Chinese culture and arts to middle school students in Troy. The Institute provided TCS with a $10,000 grant to help establish the classroom for the start of the new school year.
"If we are able to reach out to elementary schools and middle schools and high schools, we can generate perhaps more interest in Mandarin Chinese as a desired language to learn," said Dr. Earl Ingram, Senior Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs at TROY. "The CI is especially equipped to reach out and help young people grasp an interest in and the fundamentals of the language."
TROY's Confucius Institute was named by Confucius Institute Worldwide as the leading institute in North America earlier this year.
"This will be one of only four (Confucius Classrooms) in the state of Alabama, and the only true public school that's not a magnet school or private school. We're excited about that because we are constantly trying to improve the relationship between Troy City Schools and Troy University to benefit our students as well as bring exposure to the Chinese culture in the globalized world we live in today," said Dr. Lee Hicks, superintendent of Troy City Schools.
Charles Henderson Middle School Principal Aaron Brown, left, and Dr. Earl Ingram, Senior Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, formalize a partnership between the Confucius Institute at Troy University establishing a Confucius Classroom at the middle school, along with Troy City Schools Superintendent Dr. Lee Hicks and Confucius Institute Director Dr. Iris Xu. (TROY photo/Kevin Glackmeyer)