SCEN Update January 2021

06 January 2021

SCEN-UPDATE-ICON-2

TAKING FORWARD THE MANDARIN AGENDA IN 2021 – POSTPONEMENT (TO FEBRUARY/ MARCH) OF GTCS/ SCEN WEBINAR PLANNED FOR JANUARY

With the continuing pandemic and new lockdown, all of us are having to reprioritise in order to maintain a learning agenda for our young people in unprecedented times of difficulty. This has meant the postponement of some planned events. In the case of SCEN it means postponing the scheduled webinar which we were organising with GTCS for the end of January 2021.  The purpose of the event is to explore ways in which Mandarin learning and teaching can be taken forward throughout Scotland. This is a focus which remains central to our work, and we intend that the webinar be re-scheduled for late February/ early March. We shall let you know as soon as possible.Very best wishes for 2021 to all involved, whether directly or indirectly, in the learning and teaching of Mandarin in Scotland. We fervently hope for better days soon for us all.

MANDARIN MATTERS – MORE THAN EVER

In these difficult and challenging times, the opportunity for young people to learn Mandarin is more important than ever. In the world post Brexit, and as China grows in importance on the world stage, it is imperative that young Scots are able to work and communicate, in Mandarin, with the generation growing up now in China. During this period of pandemic and resultant lockdown across much of the world, we must not lose sight of this priority. SCEN continues to make the case clear for Mandarin learning on all available opportunities, now mostly online (e.g., Scottish Parliament Cross Party Group on China), but soon again, we trust, in face-to-face contact as well.

SCEN remains in close contact with Scottish Government, Education Scotland, the Confucius Institutes in Scotland (including CISS), and the General Teaching Council for Scotland in discussing and supporting the Mandarin agenda through this period.

YOUTH VOICE WITHIN SCEN

Never before have there been so many pressures on young learners in Scotland, and across the world. But taking forward the Mandarin agenda means, in part, it is young people themselves who are learning Mandarin to act as Ambassadors for the language. Much of our contact with schools in these challenging times is through teachers of Mandarin (many members of the SCEN Chinese Teaching Club). Teachers of Mandarin play such an important role in ensuring that students continue to learn online, as well as teachers supporting each other through online fora. SCEN intends to organise an online webinar/ virtual conference focused on young people at some time in 2021 (replacing the SCEN Youth conferences of recent years which are currently no longer possible). Rosemary Mitchell is leading for SCEN in taking this forward. To be part of what we are seeking to do, contact Rosemary directly at YouthVoice@SCEN.info. Rosemary looks forward to hearing from teachers and others on any ideas you may have to promote the work your school and students are doing to take forward the learning and teaching of Chinese.

We intend also in 2021 to bring young people together, in a new forum, using the platform ofE-sgoil,supported by CISS. We shall be in touch with you on this.

The SCEN Ambassadors programme continues to support the work of teachers and students in schools. For further details visit the SCEN website’s Ambassadors’ Page.

SCEN WEBSITE

We intend to make substantial changes to the SCEN website in 2021, as well as improving and bringing up to date our internal (especially online) communications. We shall be in touch with you soon about this.

UPCOMING DATES FOR SCEN

29 January: SCEN Advisory Council Meeting

11 February: SCEN Trustees Meeting

14 May: SCEN Chinese Teaching Club Meeting

 

Please continue to support the work of SCEN in 2021 – and encourage friends, students, and colleagues to join the SCEN Network.

 

With best wishes to you all,
Simon Macaulay
Chair