Feature: Chinese school in Egypt bridges mutual relations


by Marwa Yahya
MINUFIYA, Egypt, Oct. 8 — An Egyptian school, established by the Chinese as a gift, has boosted interest among Egyptians in China’s culture and educational model.
Located in Minufiya province, 65 km northwest of the capital of Cairo, Free Egypt Experiment School was established in 2009, partially opened in 2010, and became fully operational in 2013.
Under the educational aid program for Egypt, China has established two schools in the North African country: one in Minufiya province and another one in October 6 City in Cairo.
“The Chinese gift to Egypt is a bridge for communication between the Egyptian and Chinese people, and reaffirms strong mutual relations,” Minufiya Governor Ahmed Shireen told Xinhua.
While local schools mostly use black board with chalk, lacking sport or art facilities, the Free Egypt Experiment School takes advantage of interactive smart board, laptops, iPad and electronic books to educate students.
The school is “a model to be imitated in developing educational system in Egypt,” Governor Shireen noted, adding that “With no exaggeration, it is one of the best schools in Egypt.”
“Parents are racing to enroll their children in this school,” Mohamed Sherief, head of the education office in Minufiya province, told Xinhua.
The provincial official said that he is keen to invite businessmen, who want to establish private schools in Egypt, to visit this school and appreciate its logic, equipment and faculty.
Ahmed Abdel Ghani, a student in secondary school, said that many parents became intrigued by the Chinese culture and asked the school to teach Chinese as the second language instead of English.
Envied by his friends in other schools, Ghani is now enjoying the theatre, library, multi-media labs and mosque inside the school.
The Chinese government has helped with the maintenance of the school, granting it with 76,000 U.S. dollar worth of tools and equipment, said the school’s headmaster Sabry Nabawi.
“There is coordination between Egypt and China for teaching Chinese language in the school,” Nabawi added.[db:内容2]