Twelve Minnesota schools are to split nearly $500,000 from the Confucius Institute Headquarters in Beijing, China, to teach Chinese language and culture.
The funding was arranged by the University of Minnesota's Confucius Institute, which will oversee the programs at the schools. The grant was announced Tuesday.
The money will go toward hiring Chinese language teachers, buying textbooks and language materials and funding cultural learning opportunities.
The $500,000 will be spent this school year, but the expectation is that the 12 schools will get continuing funding over the next five years so they can develop sustainable programs.
The 12 schools are Battle Lake Public School, Centennial School District, Concordia Language Villages, Fergus Falls High School, Minneapolis Public Schools, Minnetonka Public Schools, Rochester Public Schools, St. John's Preparatory School, South Washington County Public Schools, Willmar High School, Xin Xing Academy at Hopkins Public Schools and Yinghua Academy.