Dutch School Principals’ Visit to China

The week (Oct 9th to Oct 14th) witnessed Dutch school principals’ visit to Beijing and Shanghai, which was organized by Groningen Confucius Institute and hosted by Communication University of China. Being one of Hanban’s (the headquarter of Confucius Institutes) programs of foreign educators’ visit to China, this visit opened an important channel of educational communication between China and the Netherlands.

Communication University of China first welcomed principals’ visit on Oct 10th. The principals attended a keynote speech--Chinese Media and Higher Education by President Zhengrong Hu and took tours of the campus and China Media Museum. Alphonse, principal of Teresiaschool commented that Mr. Hu’s speech combining data and cases impressed him a lot and also gave him an in-depth understanding of Chinese media industry and media education.

President Zhengrong Hu was giving a speech

The principal group paid a visit to the High School Affiliated to Beijing International Studies University and had a meeting with Principal Xiaojie Fu and the principals of a few schools in Guanzhuang District, inclduing the Primary School Affiliated to Beijing International Studies University, Beijing Chen Jing Lun High School and Beijing Foreign Language Experiment School. Many topics were discussed in their talk, such as campus culture, curriculum design and education management.

The principals were having a meeting with principals from local school in High School Affiliated to Beijing International Studies University

In visiting Hanban, the principals attended the exhibition of Chinese learning textbooks. In the culture center, they had a close contact with Chinese culture by beating Bianzhong, trying on Peking Opera costumes and being involved with multimedia interaction.

The principals' visit to Hanban

After their stay in Beijing, principals’ second stop was in Shanghai. They went to Shanghai Kongjiang High School where they participated in mathematics and English classes. In addition, they had an extensive communication with Principal Mingyan Jiang and Director Wei Gu on such matters as curriculum design and talent cultivation.

The principals attended classes in Shanghai Kongjiang High School

On the 13th of October, in Shanghai International Convention Center, principal group attended the lecture—Contemporary Chinese Economy by Professor Hua Xin from Shanghai International Studies University. They also took a tour of Oriental Pearl Tower, Shanghai History Museum, China pavilion at Expo 2010 in Shanghai and so on to gain more knowledge and understanding about China. A week’s trip in China presented to the principals the image of flourishing China and the unique charm of Chinese culture.

Jingyi Liu, Director of Groningen Confucius Institute and leader of the delegation, said that Chinese education has been gaining momentum over years. She added that there are 70 schools in the Netherlands with Chinese Language and Culture programs, including the schools that the principals in the delegation are leading. Therefore, this trip can provide a great opportunity for principals to have an extensive understanding of China and can propel Chinese learning in the Netherlands forward.

This was the first time that Andre Peter who is the principal from Groevenbeek Christelijk School visited China. He said that this trip not only gave him a chance to experience rich Chinese culture and gain a further knowledge of the present situation in China, but also provoked his thoughts on the educational communication between two countries and provided new perspectives in designing Chinese courses. Principal Helene of Vincent van Gogh School and Principal Huib from Kandinsky College said that they were determined to learn Chinese after returning to the Netherlands.

Dutch Principals’ Trip to China Program aims to provide policy makers and regulators in the educational domain in the Netherlands a variety of channels of gaining more knowledge in the areas of Chinese culture, education and society. This is the second trip since the establishment of this program. The first trip took place last year, involving eight Dutch principals. Its significance could be evidenced by the fact that some Dutch schools embarked on the exploration of new ways of communication.

Groningen Confucius Institute
Oude Boteringestraat 42
9712 GL Groningen

tel. +31 (0)50 - 36 34 688