China Daily credits Sen. Howard Stephenson, R-Sandy, for revamping Utah’s education system by sponsoring legislation to create the nation’s first state-sponsored dual immersion language program.
And…”It all began with a trip to China in 2006,” says the newspaper. Today 13,000 Utah students speak Mandarin, the highest ratio in the US, the June 27 article says:
“And the person who made that trip and then changed education profoundly in Utah and potentially in the United States is Howard Stephenson, a Utah state Senator since 1992.
‘I was stunned by the higher knowledge level of the Chinese high school and college students during my conversations with them. Their dream for better life, their drive and ambition, their depth of world knowledge gave me such an impression that as a state senator, I was deeply concerned about our education system after I talked to them,’ said Stephenson in a recent interview with China Daily.
‘Our (American) children would never grow up and become world leaders if we do not take initiative to learn other languages and cultures immediately, especially Chinese language; and we as a country would not sustain our world leader position if our next generation does not step up.'”
You can find the full version of the article, here.