South Africa Winelands Education District Delegation Visit China

From 16 to 26 September 2011, Prof. Xie Zuoxu, Director of the Confucius Institute at Stellenbosch University, together with a four member education delegation, paid a visit to Hanban - the Confucius Institute Headquarters - and seven educational institutions ranging from primary school to university.

The members of the delegation included Mr. Makwezi Wilberforce Maliwa, Manager of Winelands Education District; Ms. Rolene Elizabeth Liebenberg , Community Interaction Manager at Stellenbosch University; Ms. Eliza Hermina Slabber , principal of Rhenisch Girls’ High School; and Mr. Roy Benjamin Van Rooyen, principal of Rhietenbosch Primary School.

Hanban was an important stop on the itinerary of their first visit to China where they were welcomed by the Division Head, Jiang Yandong and Hu Zhiyuan. The delegation introduced the educational system and the development of Chinese education in the Winelands district to Mr. Jiang, after which he elaborated on Hanban’s policy on teaching Chinese as a foreign language in other countries. The delegation, accompanied by Mr. Hu Zhiyuan, later visited the Confucius Institute teaching resources exhibition at the Hanban Business Building.

Xiamen University, Xiamen Foreign Languages School, the Affiliated Middle School of Fujian Normal University and four other schools were the delegation’s next stop. Each school engaged the delegation in discussions on teaching ideas, school management, teacher training, sources of funds, examinations and even counter-measures to students' failure in entering higher education.

The visit to China also saw Rhenisch Girls’ High School and the Affiliated Middle School of Fujian Normal University - both being famous schools with histories spanning more than 130 years - signing a cooperative agreement, which laid the foundation for further cooperation and communication.

A meeting to conclude the affairs was held in the Confucius Institute office on 13 October, to discuss valuable aspects learned from this visit. Mr. Maliwa and Ms. Liebenberg expressed their interest in promoting Chinese teaching in the Winelands district, while Ms. Slabber and Mr. Van Rooyen’s presentations about their visit to China during the Winelands District Principals Meeting on 20 October, also inspired other schools in establishing Chinese classrooms. To wrap up the lessons learned and relations established, Rhenisch Girls' High School successfully hosted a Chinese Cultural Evening on 31 October, which aimed to introduce China and Chinese culture.



Rhenish Girls’ High School and Affiliated Middle School of Fujian Normal University signed a cooperative agreement.

    The South African delegation visits Hanban.


Article written by the Confucius Institute at Stellenbosch University. Photos courtesy of Hanban.

Rhenisch Girls’ High School and Affiliated Middle School of Fujian Normal University signed a cooperative agreement