NAIROBI (Xinhua) --
Kenya plans to introduce teaching of Mandarin
Chinese in primary schools in 2020, a government official said
Julius Jwan, CEO Kenya Institute of
Curriculum Development (KICD), told Xinhua in Nairobi that the
design, scope and sequence of the mandarin syllabus have already
"Beginning 2020, we will commence teaching Mandarin as a
foreign language from grade four for pupils who wish to learn
the Asian language," Jwan said.
Mandarin will be taught as a foreign language alongside
French, Arabic and German.
Jwan said that children in lower primary will be taught
vernacular languages, adding that teaching of Mandarin will be
introduced as part of the Competency Based Curriculum that is
being rolled out this year.
KICD said that Mandarin can no longer be ignored in Kenya
because it is one of the most widely spoken languages globally.
"The place of China in the world economy has also grown to be
so strong that Kenya stands to benefit if its citizens can
understand Mandarin," Jwan said.
The CEO noted that Kenya will also be able to attract more
Chinese tourists if it increases the number of local Mandarin
He observed that even for the job market it will be a big
advantage for Kenyans to improve their Mandarin language skills.
He revealed that Chinese is also being prioritized because it
is one of the official languages of the United Nations.