China Opens Government-Sponsored K-12 School in Dubai
What’s new: China opened its first overseas public school in Dubai, United Arab Emirates on Tuesday. The Chinese School Dubai, with financial support from the Chinese government, will cover 12-year basic education from primary to high school and operate on a nonprofit basis.
The school plans to enroll 800 students and has already admitted around 200 pupils on its opening day. The school’s officials and teachers were recruited from the eastern Chinese city of Hangzhou.
While there has been no public information on how the curriculum is set, the Chinese Consul-General in Dubai Li Xuhang said Tuesday at the opening ceremony that the school will provide “the children of overseas Chinese in Dubai with basic Chinese education of high-quality.”
UAE Vice President Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum said the opening of the school “reflects the depth and strength of the ties of friendship and cooperation” between the two countries.
The background: China has relied almost exclusively on Confucius Institutes, the government-run global education programs, to promote Chinese language and culture overseas. But the organizations have come under growing criticism amid concerns about rising Chinese influence.
U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Tuesday said he was hopeful that Chinese Confucius Institute cultural centers on U.S. university campuses would all be closed before the end of the year. On Aug.13, Washington said it would require the Confucius Institute U.S. Center to register as a “foreign mission.”
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