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Georgia school district makes Mandarin mandatory

September 14, 2012

Some Ga. Schools Make Mandarin Mandatory

by ADAM RAGUSEA

Instructor Huiling Li encourages second-grader Trinity Faulkner on the first day of Mandarin Chinese classes at Brookdale Elementary School in Macon, Ga.

EnlargeAdam Ragusea for NPRInstructor Huiling Li encourages second-grader Trinity Faulkner on the first day of Mandarin Chinese classes at Brookdale Elementary School in Macon, Ga.

September 8, 2012

Public schools in Macon, Ga., and surrounding Bibb County have a lot of problems. Most of the 25,000 students are poor enough to qualify for free and reduced lunch, and about half don’t graduate.

Bibb County’s Haitian-born superintendent Romain Dallemand came into the job last year with a bag of changes he calls “The Macon Miracle.” There are now longer schools days, year-round instruction, and one mandate nobody saw coming: Mandarin Chinese for every student, pre-K through 12th grade.

Please read and listen  here.

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