Volume 33, Number 14 • April 14, 2015

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The Valley Catholic September 23, 2014

 

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Saint Francis High School responds to trend to study Chinese
Posting Date: 03-19-2013


By Laurie Gustafson
According to the Center for Applied Linguistics, thousands of schools across America have decreased their foreign language offerings in the last decade. In the midst of this decline, however, there appears to be a race by schools to offer instruction in Chinese.
Experts say there are several factors fueling this surge, but one likely reason is parents, students and educators recognize the expanding influence of the world’s most populous country.
“Proficiency in languages other than English and meaningful understanding of international cultures is critical in our global society and economy,” said Patricia Tennant, Principal of Saint Francis High School in Mountain View, a school that recognized the burgeoning interest to study Chinese and responded by establishing a comprehensive program in 2007.
“Providing opportunities for our students to study and serve varied communities of the world reflects the global vision of the late Blessed Father Basil Moreau, founder of the Congregation of Holy Cross. He understood, over 170 years ago, that a comprehensive education based on Gospel values could bring purpose to students’ lives in the chaos of the society that surrounds them,” Tennant explained.
Saint Francis offers four levels of Chinese, as well as AP Chinese, and is home to several clubs and activities that support its Mandarin program. The school’s iFamily Club promotes cross-cultural communication between American and Chinese high school students through the use of various

technologies, including Skype.
Its members recently had the opportunity to interact face-to-face with their Chinese peers when they served as on-campus tour guides for ten students and five teachers visiting from Shenzhen Middle School, an elite Chinese secondary school encompassing grades 10-12, who were visiting the U.S. to compete in a national physics competition.
There is also a thriving Chinese exchange program at Saint Francis which recently welcomed 23 students and two teachers from Sinolink Primary School in Shenzhen, China. Sinolink students spent their days at St. Joseph Elementary School in Mountain View, Saint Francis’ local partner in the exchange.
“Any chance we have to broaden the horizons of our students and introduce them to cultures and languages other than their own is a gift,” explained St. Joseph Principal Stephanie Mirenda.
“I consider time spent with these students a blessing. Each year, our students pick up a little more Mandarin, and I hope they will advance to the Saint Francis Chinese classes when they become Lancers,” Mirenda said.
Visiting students attend Saint Francis Mandarin teachers Michael Conley’s and Wei-Li Huang’s Chinese classes where they share customs and culture. Students stayed with Saint Francis and St. Joseph host families.
Conley said, “It is clear parents and students view China’s emergence as important and believe that fluency in its language and appreciation of its history and culture is worthwhile.”

 
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04-14-2015 - Sports info
04-14-2015 - Wheelchair Basketball Presentation for St. Christopher’s 1st and 2nd Graders
04-14-2015 - St. John Vianney Students Participate in We Day at the SAP Center
04-14-2015 - St. Simon First Graders visit Eastside Neighborhood Center
04-14-2015 - St. Lucy Students “Do Something” for Change
04-14-2015 - St. Mary School, Gilroy, launches Robotics Club
04-14-2015 - Hearing the Call of God: Students Celebrate Vocation’s Week at St. John The Baptist School
04-14-2015 - Vincentian Founders Day Celebration
04-14-2015 - Notre Dame students and their fathers spend time working together
04-14-2015 - Grandparents’ Day in the Preschool and Pre-K Classrooms at St. Justin School
04-14-2015 - School Spirit Soars with Archbishop Mitty High School’s “Monarch Madness”
04-14-2015 - Confirmation students attend Mask Retreat at St. Christopher Parish
04-14-2015 - Eighth graders partake in CRS/Operation Rice Bowl potluck
04-14-2015 - Saint Francis highlights living well & managing stress
04-14-2015 - Holy Family School celebrates St. Patrick’s Day
Highlights
Sections - Art & Life
BOOK REVIEW: Junipero Serra: California, Indians and the Transformation of a Missionary

News - In The Diocese
ILM to graduate Class of 2015 in May

A Vocation Director’s Plea for Help

Stewardship Seminar set for June 4

DSJ to participate in 2nd Annual Silicon Valley Gives

Bishop McGrath blesses holy oils during Chrism Mass at Cathedral

Bishop Daly’s Farewell Mass Set for May 3

News - Community
Santa Clara University’s Bannan Institute on Ignatian Leadership

New Catholic Charities After-School CORAL STEM Lab at Kennedy School

PACT kicks off series on immigration reform

Gilroy native Martina E. Vandenberg honored with SCU Award

Reflecting on Human Trafficking

Sections - Commentary
Guest Commentary: On Bullying

Making a Difference: Dialogue–an essential ingredient for peaceful relationships

Spirituality: Principles for Interfaith Dialogue and Interfaith Attitudes

I am risen and I am with you still, Alleluia!

Keep the Poor Always Before You

Sections - Columns
Spirituality: The Passion of Jesus

Sections - Spanish News
Misa de despedida del obispo Thomas A. Daly para el 3 de mayo.

ILM Graduación mayo 2015

A propósito de la semana del Buen Pastor…

Mensage de Pascua del Obispo McGrath

Misa Crismal LOS SANTOS OLEOS, EL CRISMA

News - CNS News
Pope accepts resignation of Bishop Finn

Parents of slain child oppose death penalty for Boston Marathon bomber

Cardinal George, 78, dies after long fight with cancer

Vatican, LCWR announce successful conclusion of process to reform group

Pope says children are never a mistake, calls adults to responsibility

Bishops object to death penalty as punishment in Boston bomber case

Church leaders in South Sudan push alternative peace process

Sections - Catholic Schools
School Spirit Soars with Archbishop Mitty High School’s “Monarch Madness”

Grandparents’ Day in the Preschool and Pre-K Classrooms at St. Justin School

Vincentian Founders Day Celebration

Hearing the Call of God: Students Celebrate Vocation’s Week at St. John The Baptist School

Saint Francis highlights living well & managing stress