CLOSTER, N. J. -- When the doors open this year at Tenakill Middle School in Closter, one of the new faces will be a Mandarin language teacher from China.
The Tenakill community is preparing to welcome exchange teacher Vivian Duan from Zibo, China, who will teach Mandarin at the school for the 2016-17 year. The school was one of only 23 schools nationwide to be selected out of 200 applicants for the exchange program, which is sponsored by the federal government, officials said.
School officials have found a host family for August, but they are still looking for lodging throughout the school year. Duan will be here through June, school officials said.
School staff and families are preparing care packages to welcome Duan, who is expected to arrive this month. For details on how to help, visit the district's website.
Offering Mandarin language will help the school expand its world languages program, officials said. Mandarin, which is considered a critical language, has been a well-established offering at Northern Valley Regional High School.
The exchange program is funded through a federal grant, and is part of The Teachers For Critical Languages Program through the federal State Department Bureau of Cultural Affairs.