In a special school assembly this morning, Education Minister, Sue Ellery, granted 34 students from Years 5-6 at Oberthur Primary School as Honorary Youth Ambassadors, ahead of their 16 day study tour in China.
The school’s Chinese Immersion Program saw these students learning Mandarin since they were in pre-primary, where students are taught their normal curriculum solely in Mandarin for 6.5 hours a week.
Ms Ellery said learning a language is a critical skill for tomorrow’s leaders.
“Speaking Mandarin and understanding Chinese culture will be hugely beneficial for students as we diversify our economy and continue to engage with Asia on business, trade and tourism opportunities,” she said.
The group will travel to Shenzhen, Hangzhou, Xi’an and Beijing, as they learn more about China’s culture and visit the must see sights, including the Great Wall, Summer Palace, Forbidden City, and Tiananmen Square.
The students will also spend a day in the class room working with local students from Fang Cao Di Primary School.
“These students will be exposed to practical learning opportunities while representing WA in China – immersing themselves in the culture, learning about Chinese history and speaking the language,” said Ms Ellery.
In 2017 the number of kindergarten to year 12 students studying Mandarin at WA public schools was 8,281, up from 7,321 the previous year.