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In India, there is an increased interest in the German language
© dpa - International
Germanyís Schools: Partners for the Future initiative takes off in India

June 11, 2008

Germany’s Schools: Partners for the Future initiative is building a worldwide network of 1,000 schools of excellence that will provide students the best quality of German lessons. The Goethe-Institut (Max Mueller Bhavan in South Asia) will choose 500 of them, and the first two schools from India signed the contracts on Monday, 9th June 2008.

On the initiative of German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier, the Goethe-Institut, the Central Agency for Schools Abroad (ZfA), the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) and the Educational Exchange Service (PAD) launched the project Schools: Partners for the Future in early 2008. Under the coordination of the German Foreign Office, its goal is to build up a worldwide network of at least 1,000 partner schools for the Federal Republic of Germany, which will offer highest-quality German lessons and focus on providing information about Germany. The existing network of German schools abroad and schools offering the German Language Certificate will be expanded over the next three years by another 500 schools selected by the Goethe-Institut. It will focus its attention on countries involved in development cooperation where German lessons are not yet widespread.

On Monday, 9th June 2008, Hans-Georg Knopp, Secretary-General of the Goethe-Institut, signed agreements with the first two partner schools, both from the New Delhi metropolitan area. Ashok Chandra, chair of the Delhi Public School Society signed for the Indian schools. Nina Sehgal, headmistress of the Delhi Public School in Noida, and Vinay Kumar, headmaster of the Delhi Public School in Vasant Kunj were also present. Ashok Chandra emphasised that “the signing of the contract with the Goethe-Institut will strengthen our ties with Germany for the long term and greatly benefit the pupils and teachers. We are looking forward to even closer cooperation.” Hans-Georg Knopp also stressed that “the Schools: Partners for the Future initiative and the worldwide network it is creating will enable pupils to later act as proficient and attentive players in a globalised world. The Federal Republic of Germany will gain long-term partners around the world, which will come into contact with the German language and culture very early.”

The Goethe-Institute is in the process of identifying a total of 55 partner schools in the South Asia region, 43 in India, six in Pakistan, three in Sri Lanka, two in Bangladesh and one in Nepal.

The pupils as well as the teachers of the partner schools will be given extensive promotional measures to contribute to sustained qualifications, beginning with excellent German lessons, well-equipped classrooms and ranging to language and further training courses in Germany. This summer the Goethe-Institut will invite 450 pupils from around the world to Germany for three-week summer courses. The first course began on 8th June 2008 with participants from India Indonesia, Australia, Italy, Finland and Mongolia. From India more than 20 teachers and a total of 60 students along with their six accompanying teachers will attend the different seminars and Youth Camps in Germany on full fellowships.

© Goethe Institut, German Information Centre New Delhi
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