By Mary O’KEEFE
Parents in the Crescenta Valley area have requested the Glendale Unified School District to explore creating a Mandarin language class at Crescenta Valley High School.
“We knew if we made this request to the district we should have a survey from our parents,” said Linda Austin, a local parent.
She, along with other parents, began their fight for a Mandarin language class a few years ago. Her young children attended Fremont Elementary and she had just started learning what it was like to be a school leader.
Austin said she began by speaking to district administrators, but did not get positive feedback. She didn’t give up and, along with other parents, created a survey to send out to local parents asking them to share their opinion on the class.
“China is opening up to the world,” she said of her reason behind offering the language.
She feels that learning Chinese, or Mandarin which is the language most commonly spoken in China, is a good way to prepare students for the future.
When she began her Mandarin request, the present GUSD superintendent Dr. Richard Sheehan was not at the district. She said she is currently receiving a more positive response.
Parents created their own survey; however, the district decided to use one they created.
“It is not exactly what we wanted, but we needed to get the survey to parents,” she said.
The survey is available online. Austin worries that it is not available to those without access to the internet and that it has not been translated into other languages, especially Korean since there are many parents of Korean descent in Crescenta Valley.
She does, however, want to get the word out to local parents to take the survey and is glad that this effort has been made by GUSD.
Parents are encouraged to take the survey at:
For more information, contact Linda Austin at firstname.lastname@example.org. The last day to take the survey is Friday, June 6.
Calls to GUSD administration were not returned by press time.