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Chinese language School Certificate exam

19 March 2000

Students studying Chinese as a second language will be able to sit School Certificate in the subject for the first time this year.

Education Minister Trevor Mallard said today that he had asked the New Zealand Qualifications Authority to run a School Certificate Examination in Chinese (Second Language) from this year on.

"There is already an examination at Bursary level in Chinese and I accept that not having an examination at School Certificate level limits the number of students taking this language subject.

"This decision puts Chinese language on an equal footing with other international languages taught in our schools, and honours the protocol signed in China by former Associate Minister of Education, Roger McClay, to promote the study of Chinese in New Zealand.

"The examination will only exist for two years until the implementation of the new National Certificate of Educational Achievement, but a lot of the ground work for the prescription and examination has already been completed and will be put to good use for years to come.

"Much of that work was done by the President of the New Zealand Chinese Language Association, Mary Gray, in conjunction with the National Chinese Language Adviser, Professor Zhang Zhanyi who ran a fifth form examination last year. I thank them for their input.

"The Qualifications Authority will be working with the Association to ensure an examination is available this year," Trevor Mallard.

Qualifications Authority: Bill Lennox (Communications Manager) – 025 575 783

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