In an effort to boost trade between Uganda and China, the Ugandan government has selected 35 secondary schools country wide which will be teaching Chinese language.
According to the President Yoweri Museveni government, the decision which will roll out in 2019 was informed by not only the trade ties but to also the growing friendship between the two countries.
The Ugandan schools were identified and selected by the country's Ministry of Education’s National Curriculum Development Center (NCDC).
At least 35 teacher trainers who learned the Chinese language for the last nine months will be posted to the institutions spread across the country's five regions. “We have received materials such as textbooks and illustrations. We have also received some tutors from the Chinese government,” said Presidency minister Esther Mbayo.
The director of the NCDC, Grace Baguma, said the Chinese language subject will be compulsory for Senior One and Senior Two students and optional for Senior Three and other upper classes. “We hope the schools will comply. We hope to increase the number of schools with time,” Baguma said. To sustain the programme, she said two more groups of teachers will be trained in the next two years so that the number goes to 100.
She further noted that Makerere University will introduce a bachelor’s degree course for more qualified teachers.
This brings the number of international subjects taught in Uganda to six, others being English, French, Arabic, Latin and German. “We have been part of this cause and will continue to support it. We will introduce the master’s degree with time,” said Eria Hisali from the College of Business and Management at Makerere.