The formal unveiling of the Mandarin Teaching Station of Confucius Institute at DUT and handing over ceremony of the donation took place at the school on Monday, 2 December.
South/ Africa–China relations are developing at a dynamic pace. And Clairwood Secondary School (CSS) is at the pinnacle of this global revolution after being the recipients of a R673 000 donation from China, through the Mandarin Teaching Station of Confucius Institute at the Durban University of Technology (DUT).
The formal unveiling of the Mandarin Teaching Station of Confucius Institute at DUT and handing over ceremony of the donation took place at the school on Monday, 2 December in the presence of esteemed guests from the institute, the Chinese delegation, the South African department of education as well as school staff and learners. Guest speakers addressed the congregation on the importance of putting education at the forefront and prioritising the development of education in order to keep up with the times of the ever changing society. This was followed by an official signing ceremony to seal the partnership and the unveiling of the Mandarin Teaching Station of Confucius Institute plaque at the school.
The Confucius Institute has also been provided the opportunity to teach Mandarin at the school as well as a ‘China corner’ with literature about the country, so learners can be exposed and learn more about their global partner, China.
The world class investment opportunity was initiated by former CSS learner and deputy director-general for Asia and Middle East at the Department of International Relations and Co-operation, Professor Anil Sooklal, who arranged to have the Chinese delegation visit the school as his way of giving back to the technical high school where he was educated. The Chinese were impressed by what the school had to offer and its untapped potential and therefore initially pledged R500 000 to the school as well as 10 computers with internet access, 200 chairs and a partnership with Hisense to assist with the school’s refrigeration and air-conditioning programme.
The Chinese ambassador to South Africa, Lin Songtian who facilitated the donation from China, had only good things to say about the school and was pleased about the official partnership between China and CSS. He said that China’s goal is to uplift South Africa as it has all the ingredients required to become a fully-fledged and prosperous country.
Clairwood Secondary School principal, Yugan Naidoo extended a vote of thanks on behalf of the school governing body, staff and members of CSS to all stakeholders and distinguished guests. “To the Chinese delegation we are grateful and honoured to be singled out from all the other schools in KZN. This healthy relationship is growing from strength to strength. I talk about China everyday now, people think I’m going mad. I even consider myself the local ambassador of China,” joked a proud Naidoo.
Pictured: Clairwood Secondary School principal, Yugan Naidoo and Chinese ambassador to South Africa, Lin Songtian unveil the Mandarin Teaching Station of Confucius Institute plaque at the school.
Nothando Mthembu and the Southlands Sun newspaper