Well done to the teaching staff and pupils who have been recognised with the Confucius Classroom of the Year 2013 Award.
A superb achievement for a Hub that has only been in existence for 4 years.
The work of the Confucius Hub is being extended across all school Clusters in East Renfrewshire this year by the Education Department.
The teaching of Chinese language, supporting Chinese cultural activities across the different subjects, the development of language skills of our teachers, encouraging the uptake and learning of languages in all educational establishments, pre-five, primary and secondary, are recognisable strengths in our schools.
The work is very much in tune with the new national curricular developments being encouraged and developed in our schools and the young people are enjoying learning the language and taking part in cultural activities and competitions.
Many of our schools have seen a growing number of pupils receive national recognition in the different competitions sponsored by the Confucius Institute.
Success in SQA Exams from Intermediate, Higher and Advanced Higher has been excellent.
One of the main developments for the future is to develop further the ability of our teachers to teach the language in pre-Five and Primary and we will do this through in-service training and Authority conferences.
By encouraging more of our young people to learn key words and phrases they will recognise that learning languages is for them.
This investment will encourage language uptake, develop into a lifetime of interest, and provide young people with the opportunity to study at Higher and Further Education.
This can only be to the benefit of Scottish and British businesses and for future employment.
It will also improve further the cultural links with the Chinese community at home and abroad.
China is a huge economic power and its global influence is becoming more apparent. It is vital that our young people understand this and are prepared well to grasp the many opportunities that will become available through the growing Scottish-Chinese economic and cultural connections.