San Francisco’s public libraries are offering free Mandarin classes for adults and children this summer.
Key details: The classes will be offered in 10 branches of the San Francisco Public Library. Adult classes will be held in Excelsior, Golden Gate Valley, Richmond and Visitacion Valley branches, while children’s classes will be available in Anza, Ingleside, Marina, Portola, West Portal and the Main Library’s children’s center.
Some beginner’s classes start on June 10. Each branch will reportedly hold weekly classes.
There is no prerequisite for joining the classes, which will be led by instructors from around the Bay Area. Those who complete 20 hours will receive a book tote designed by artist K-Fai Steele.
Why it’s being done: Around 149,000 San Francisco residents reportedly speak a form of Chinese. Alongside Cantonese, Mandarin is considered one of San Francisco’s Chinese “threshold languages,” which are designated once the city houses 10,000 Limited English Proficient residents who share a particular language.
The library classes are now in their fifth year. They are held in partnership with the Education Division of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office, which serves as Taiwan’s alternative diplomatic mission or de facto embassy/consulate in cities that have formal ties with Beijing.
The classes are also part of San Francisco’s Summer Stride program. The annual initiative features opportunities for learning, reading and exploration.
How to sign up: All classes are drop-in and do not require registration. For more information, head over to the San Francisco Public Library’s official website. Questions may be addressed to [email protected].