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在第十二届孔子学院 大会闭幕式上的总结讲话

中英对照版 2018年第1期 田学军 2018-05-11

各位嘉宾、各位同事,

女士们,先生们,朋友们:

下午好!经过两天来大家的共同努力,第十二届孔子学院大会就要闭幕了。受中国国务院副总理、孔子学院总部理事会主席刘延东女士委托,下面我做大会总结发言

——本届大会,共有146个国家和地区的2000多名代表,包括500多位中外大学校长参加,是孔子学院有史以来规模最大的一次盛会,是名副其实的世界“教育达沃斯”。大家欢聚一堂,讨论热烈,给隆冬中的古都西安带来暖暖的春意,有力彰显了孔子学院大家庭的向心力和凝聚力。

——本届大会,刘延东副总理主持召开总部理事会会议,总结了一年来全球孔子学院工作,研究制定了明年重点工作计划。刘副总理出席了大会开幕式并发表题为“深化合作,创新发展,为构建人类命运共同体贡献力量”的主旨演讲,为未来孔子学院发展奠定了总基调。

——本届大会,举办了参与“一带一路”建设、促进民心相通等7个校长论坛,召开了师资建设规划、教学资源创新等8个院长论坛,首次推出了“孔子学院与构建人类命运共同体”大会论坛,各位代表建言献策,集思广益,交流了办学经验,达成了广泛共识。

——本届大会,评选了系列优秀奖项,举办了孔子学院办学成果展、汉语教材展、汉字书法展、美食文化展,组织了具有陕西地域特色的文艺演出,展示了历史文化名城西安的独特魅力。代表们纷纷表示,大会内容丰富、成果丰硕,留下了深刻印象。

两天来,各位代表重逢老朋友、结识新朋友,畅谈友谊、共商大计,推动大会取得圆满成功。在此,我代表中国教育部和孔子学院总部,向各位代表致以诚挚的谢意!

大会期间,孔子学院总部的各位负责人旁听了大会论坛和校长、院长论坛,论坛场场爆满,大家讨论得很热烈,效果非常好,我们都深受启发,备受鼓舞。大家都知道,近期,中国共产党成功召开第十九次全国代表大会,标志着中国特色社会主义进入新时代。大会规划了中国到本世纪中叶建成富强民主文明和谐美丽社会主义现代化强国的路线图和时间表,提出了推动人类命运共同体建设、共同创造人类美好未来的宏伟构想,受到国际社会高度关注。本届大会期间,很多代表与我交流时,都提出希望能更多了解新时代中国教育的基本情况、政策走向,特别是对外开放和国际交流合作方面的重要改革创新举措,以便更好推动孔子学院建设和发展。借此机会,我愿就中国教育有关情况作些介绍,希望能对大家有所帮助。

新时代的中国教育,奠基在过去教育事业蓬勃发展的坚实基础之上。中共十八大以来的五年,中国教育事业上了一个大台阶,发生了全方位的变化,实现了系统性的提升,取得了历史性的成就。

——这五年,中国教育现代化加速推进。国家财政性教育经费支出连年增长,从2万亿增加到3万多亿元人民币,占GDP比例连续5年保持在4%以上。全国中小学互联网接入率从5年前的25%提升到94%。高校获国家科技三大奖保持在2/3以上,累计为国家培养输送了8000多万大中专毕业生,有力支撑了国家创新驱动发展战略的实施。

——这五年,中国教育普及水平显著提高。2016年学前三年入园率达77.4%。小学、初中毛入学率分别达99.9%、104%,九年义务教育巩固率达93.4%,普及程度超过高收入国家平均水平。高中阶段毛入学率达87.5%。高等教育毛入学率达42.7%,超过中高收入国家平均水平。第三方评估表明,中国教育总体发展水平已进入世界中上行列。

——这五年,中国人民教育获得感持续增强。按照“一个都不能少”的原则,加强对农村贫困地区、少数民族地区的教育投入,建立健全从学前教育到高等教育、覆盖各学段的资助体系。残疾儿童义务教育入学率达到 90%以上,在高考中为盲人考生专门研制了试卷。政府、学校和各有关方面,不断推进教育公平,提高教育质量,不断满足人民日益增长的教育需求,取得了良好成效。

——这五年,中国教育国际影响力不断增强。基础教育在PISA测试中高过多数OECD国家。高校在世界多项大学排行中位次整体提升,部分学科达到或者接近世界一流水平。与47个国家和地区签订了学历学位互认协议,与180多个国家和地区建立了教育合作交流关系。设立了2500多个中外合作办学机构和项目,举办了100多个本科以上境外办学机构和项目。吸引了200多个国家和地区的学生来华学习,中国成为亚洲最大、世界第三的留学目的国。

五年来中国教育取得的历史性成就,承前启后,让我们对未来更加充满信心。同时,中国仍是世界上最大的发展中国家,受发展的阶段、条件制约,教育还存在着一些有待解决的问题。新时代中国社会的主要矛盾,是人民日益增长的美好生活需要和不平衡不充分的发展之间的矛盾。对教育而言,人民日益增长的美好生活需要,体现在教育需求发生的质量型转型,即更加多样化的教育形式,更加灵活个性的教育模式,更加公平的教育供给;不平衡不充分的发展,体现为区域、城乡、校际、不同人群教育发展的差距,以及各级各类教育的短板和弱项。

新时代中国教育努力的方向,就是要着力解决好教育发展不平衡不充分的问题,更好满足人民对更公平更高质量教育的需求。我们将在十九大精神指引下,优先发展教育事业,把建设教育强国作为中华民族伟大复兴的基础工程,加快教育现代化,办好人民满意的教育。我们将落实好立德树人根本任务,发展素质教育,推进教育公平,培养德智体美全面发展的社会主义建设者和接班人。具体而言,我们要完成好八大重点任务:一是强化教育引导、实践养成和制度保障,把社会主义核心价值观融入国民教育全过程,引导青少年学生牢固树立社会责任意识、规则意识、奉献意识。二是推动城乡义务教育一体化发展,高度重视农村义务教育,办好学前教育、特殊教育和网络教育,普及高中阶段教育。三是完善职业教育和培训体系,深化产教融合、校企合作。四是加快一流大学和一流学科建设,实现高等教育内涵发展。五是健全学生资助制度,使绝大多数城乡新增劳动力接受高中阶段教育、更多接受高等教育。六是支持和规范社会力量兴办教育。七是加强师德师风建设,培养高素质教师队伍,倡导全社会尊师重教。八是办好继续教育,加快建设学习型社会,大力提高国民素质。与此相向而行,我们还将全面深化教育改革,切实加强教育法治建设,大力推进教育信息化建设,为发展具有中国特色、世界水平的现代化教育提供制度支撑和条件保障。

新时代也是中国不断为人类作出更大贡献的时代。中国始终坚持做世界和平的建设者、全球发展的贡献者、国际秩序的维护者,开放的大门不会关闭,只会越开越大。面向未来,中国教育将不断拓展更加广阔的开放空间,不断提升国际教育交流合作的质量和水平。近期,中国政府制定了《国家教育事业发展“十三五”规划》《推进共建“一带一路”教育行动》等重要文件,涉及到教育对外开放的思路、布局、举措和全球教育治理等,内容非常丰富。时间有限,在此我与大家分享几点中国教育对外开放与国际交流合作的重点举措:

一是努力提升教育开放层次和水平。积极推进世界一流大学和一流学科建设,支持研究型大学与世界高水平大学联合开展人才培养和科学攻关。支持职业学校引进国外高水平专家和优质课程资源,鼓励校际间教师互派、学生互换。鼓励有条件的中小学校与国外学校建立友好学校关系,开展多渠道对外教育交流。修订完善中外合作办学规定,注重引进优质教育资源。助推中国高校境外办学。密切跟踪新技术革命带来的教育内容、教育模式和教育理念变革,注重人工智能时代的教育国际合作研究和实践探索。

二是努力为 “一带一路”建设作贡献。2013年,习近平主席提出“一带一路”倡议,受到国际社会高度关注和热烈响应。4年来,全球100多个国家和国际组织积极参与“一带一路”建设,为沿线国家人民带来了实实在在的好处,也为推动区域教育大开放、大交流、大融合提供了历史性契机。为此,中国教育部于2016年制定了《推进共建“一带一路”教育行动》,提出了区域内教育合作的使命、原则和重点。相信在各方共同努力下,“一带一路”沿线国家的教育互联互通、人才培养、学历互认、师生互换、联合办学等各领域合作将更加务实高效。我们也希望,更多的国家、地区和组织加入到共建“一带一路”教育行动中来。

三是努力为中外人文交流开辟渠道。“国之交在于民相亲,民相亲在于心相通。” 教育作为传授知识、传播文化和塑造心灵的伟大事业,是促进中外人文交流和民心相通的重要组成部分。特别是高等教育领域,集聚了高层次人才和最具活力的青年,是中外人文交流的高地。为统筹推进人文交流工作,中国政府与8个国家和国际组织建立了高级别人文交流机制。下一步,我们将以更加积极开放的姿态,努力搭建政府间教育磋商、专家学者务实合作、教师学生友好往来的平台,吸引和凝聚社会各界力量打造人文交流品牌项目,促进和而不同、兼收并蓄的各国文明互学互鉴。

四是努力为国际学生提供优质服务。中国将努力吸引更多外国学生来华学习。早在2010年,中国教育部就印发了《留学中国计划》,提出到2020年在中国大中小学就读的外国留学人员达50万人次的目标。2016年,中国出国留学人员达54.5万人,来华留学人员达44.3万人,今后规模还将持续扩大。为更好服务国际学生,今年3月,中国教育部发布了《学校招收和培养国际学生管理办法》。我们还将继续完善出国留学人员服务管理体系。

各位同事,各位朋友!

孔子学院是中国教育走向世界的重要体现,中外教育交流合作的成功典范。随着中国的快速发展,各国人民学习汉语、了解中国的需求不断增长,全球范围内的“汉语热”“中国热”持续升温,为孔子学院事业发展提供了难得的历史机遇。本届大会期间,各国代表围绕孔子学院建设,提出了很多很好的意见建议,刚才4位中外校长、院长代表向大会汇报了相关情况,总结得很好。对大家的意见建议,总部要认真梳理,积极吸纳。根据昨天上午总部理事会精神和确定的明年重点工作计划,结合大家的讨论,我就孔子学院未来发展,再提几点建议,供大家参考。

第一,坚持不忘初心,凝聚最大共识。“大道之行,天下为公。”近年来,习近平主席在国际国内重要场合100多次阐述人类命运共同体思想,真诚呼吁各国人民同心协力,建设持久和平、普遍安全、共同繁荣、开放包容、清洁美丽的世界,体现了中国将自身发展同世界共同发展相统一的全球视野、世界胸怀和责任担当。目前,人类命运共同体重要思想已被写入联合国安理会、社会发展委员会、人权理事会的多个文件。联合国秘书长古特雷斯明确表示,践行多边主义的目的就是要建立人类命运共同体。这表明,人类命运共同体的理念开始赢得国际社会的认同。构建人类命运共同体,核心在共同命运,基础在共同利益,关键在共同责任,前提在坚持多彩、平等、包容的文明观,通过文明交流超越文明隔阂、文明互鉴超越文明冲突、文明共存超越文明优越,促进民心相通,增进人民友谊。孔子学院的职能是开展汉语教学,使命是促进中外人文交流和各国文明互鉴,与人类命运共同体的理念高度契合。刘延东副总理在大会主旨演讲中明确提出,孔子学院要积极为构建人类命运共同体贡献力量。对此,中外代表高度评价、高度认可,大家在孔子学院的崇高使命和伟大理想方面,达成了最广泛的共识。面向未来,希望各国孔子学院和全球广大教职员工坚持不忘初心、牢记使命,精诚合作、砥砺奋进,努力将孔子学院打造成为全球著名的教育文化共同体,为构建人类命运共同体发挥独特作用,作出重要贡献。

第二,制定长远规划,完善体制机制。当今世界,文明交流互鉴已成为时代潮流,各国人民学习对方语言、了解彼此文化的愿望越来越迫切。面对新形势,总部和各国孔子学院一方面信心满怀,另一方面也有着强烈的危机意识。很多代表都非常关心孔子学院未来的战略考虑和发展愿景,希望总部抓紧制定长远发展规划。去年大会期间,总部就《孔子学院发展行动计划》草案征求了各国代表意见;今年,总部又在130多个国家进行了深入调研,进一步修改完善了草案。根据总部理事会安排,明年总部将正式发布《孔子学院发展行动计划》。同时,总部还将深入调研,总结中外双方实践经验和创新案例,适时修订《孔子学院章程》。通过制定《行动计划》和修订《章程》,推动孔子学院持续优化全球布局,稳步扩大办学规模,不断提升办学质量,主动服务“一带一路”建设和中外友好合作大局;建立健全总部统筹协调、中外双方高校发挥主体作用、地区(国别)中心靠前服务、各国孔子学院特色发展的新型管理服务体系,进一步提升全球孔子学院治理水平。希望各国孔子学院也能紧密结合实际,根据总部的《行动计划》和《章程》,制定或完善各自的章程和规划,共同推动孔子学院建设迈上新台阶。

第三,加强力量建设,提高质量水平。孔子学院覆盖面广、包容性强,跨越国界、超越种族,身处的国情和文化不同,面临的困难和挑战各异,需要持续不断地加强力量建设,提高办学质量。我认为,加强力量和提高质量,要大力推动师资专业化建设。扩大中方专职教师队伍,加大本土核心教师招聘,设立中外师资培训基地,不断扩大和完善以专职教师为骨干、中外结合、专兼结合的师资队伍体系。明年,总部将深入开展调研,制定师资建设专项规划,有针对性地加强师资方面的支撑和服务。要大力推动教材标准化建设。进一步完善教师、教材、教学、考试系列标准。实施“国际汉语教材工程”,重点研发汉语、中华文化和当代中国三套精品骨干教材,鼓励全球孔子学院自主采用。同时,支持各国孔子学院研发本土教材,积极开设各类语言文化辅修课程。要大力推动教学信息化建设。实施“互联网教学工程”,强化互联网、大数据等现代技术应用,打造“慕课”教学平台、资源共享平台、师资培训平台、文化交流平台,形成一体化的新型汉语教学体系。目前,网络孔子学院的“慕课”教学平台已正式启动,欢迎各国孔子学院提供优质课程。要大力推动孔子学院本土化建设。充分尊重各国国情和文化差异,主动适应当地民众多样化需求,通过培养本土师资、研发本土教材、开设本土课程等多种方式,持续推动孔子学院融入本土,特色发展,真正成为当地教育文化生态的重要组成部分。

第四,推动创新发展,实现转型升级。面对各国民众不断涌现的学习新期待、新需求,孔子学院要在总结成功经验的基础上,保持锐意进取精神,增强改革创新本领,推动自我转型升级,打造“孔子学院2.0版本”。积极探索灵活多样的办学模式。推动各国孔子学院因地制宜,朝着语言教学、文化交流、职业培训等方向特色发展;鼓励各国地方政府、企业、社会团体参与或与中外高校合作举办孔子学院;支持中外双方高校合作设立汉语教学中心、中国研究中心、人文交流中心。积极探索优化教学点管理模式。目前,各孔子学院和课堂,特别是48所示范孔子学院在汉语教学方面发挥了很好的辐射作用,延伸下设的教学点达5000多个,面授学员占全球学员总数的半壁江山。下一步,可考虑对教学点实行授牌制,在师资、课程、教材、考试等各方面加大支持力度,建立总部—学院—课堂—教学点不同层级的运行服务体系。积极探索设立二级学院。遴选一批中外高校,依托孔子学院设立师资培训学院,加大对全球汉语教师的岗前、岗中及专题培训;支持中外高校在自愿和条件具备的基础上,将孔子学院合作打造成外方大学的中国学院、中方高校的海外学院,推动双方学科建设和学术交流深度融合,实现孔子学院办学的新突破。

各位同事,各位朋友!

“暂来不复去,梦里到长安。”为期两天的大会就要闭幕了,相聚虽然短暂,友谊天长地久。我们期待在明年的大会上再次相聚,期待孔子学院更加美好灿烂的明天。让我们精诚合作、携手并肩,推动孔子学院开启新的征程、谱写新的篇章,为扩大教育对外开放,促进中外人文交流,构建人类命运共同体作出新的更大贡献!

最后,为成功举办本次大会,陕西省委、省政府,西安市委、市政府,以及陕西各相关院校和广大志愿者们付出了大量心血和汗水,让我们以热烈的掌声,对他们表示诚挚的感谢!

再过10多天,新的一年即将来临。在此,我预祝大家新年愉快、身体健康、家庭幸福、万事如意!

我宣布,第十二届孔子学院大会到此闭幕。谢谢!

 

Concluding Remarks at the Closing Ceremony of the 12th Confucius Institute Conference

Chinese-English No.1 2018 Tian Xuejun2018-05-11

Distinguished Guests, Dear Colleagues,

Ladies and Gentlemen, Dear Friends,

Good afternoon! The 12th Confucius Institute Conference, which has witnessed our joint efforts in the last two days, is now drawing near to a close. Entrusted by Madame Liu Yandong, Vice Premier of China and Chair of the Council of the Confucius Institute Headquarters, I would like to deliver a concluding report.

This conference was attended by over 2000 delegates from 146 countries and regions around the world, including more than 500 presidents of CI host universities and Chinese partner universities. Being an event of the largest scale in the CI history, this conference lives up to its nickname as the “World Education Davos”. Our gathering here and those heated discussions not only brought to Xi’an the vigor of spring against winter bleakness but also manifested the solidarity and cohesion of the CI family.   

This conference encompassed the Council Meeting of the Confucius Institute Headquarters chaired by Madame Liu Yandong, who together with all council members listened to the CI work report of 2017 and commented on the 2018 work plan. Madame Liu presented at the Opening Ceremony of this Conference and delivered a keynote speech entitled Deepening Reform, Developing Through Innovation, Working Together to Build a Community of Shared Future for Mankind, which set the overall tone for the future development of global CIs.

This conference was widely contributed to by delegates sharing their insights and experiences at the 7 Presidents’ Forums under such topics as Participating in the “Belt and Road” Initiative, Strengthening People-to-People Bonds, 8 Directors’ Forums under such topics as Capacity Building of Teaching Staff, Innovation of Teaching and Resources, as well as the newly-initiated Conference Forum under the topic of Development of Confucius Institutes and Building of a Community of Shared Future for Mankind, to reach a wide spectrum of common understandings.

This conference was widely considered to be fruitful and impressive with various activities and programs, presenting excellence awards; holding exhibitions of CI achievements, teaching resources, Chinese calligraphy, and Chinese food culture; arranging an art performance to showcase the unique glamour of the historical and cultural heritage of Xi’an city and Shaanxi Province.

In the last two days, all delegates have been busy meeting old friends and making new acquaintances, opening up friendships and discussing matters of crucial importance, thus bringing the Conference to a full success. Hereby, on behalf of the Ministry of Education of China as well as the Confucius Institute Headquarters, I’d like to extend my sincere gratitude to you!

During the Conference, following through well-articulated presentations and heated discussions at the Conference Forum, Presidents’ Forums and Directors’ Forums, we at the Headquarters are greatly inspired and motivated. As is known, the recently successfully convened 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China(CPC) proclaimed the entry of Socialism with Chinese characteristics into a new era; set down the road map and timetable for developing China into a great modern socialist country that is prosperous, strong, democratic, culturally advanced, harmonious, and beautiful by the mid-21st century; and proposed the grand vision of building a community of shared future for mankind and working together to create a bright tomorrow for all; which received great attention from the international community. During this conference, many delegates raised to me their wishes to learn more about the latest developments and policy trends of education in China in the new era, with particular regard to important reform and innovation measures in the field of opening up and international exchange and cooperation, so as to better push forward the development of CIs. I’d like to take this opportunity to share with you some information which might be helpful to you.

Education in China in the new era is based upon the solid foundation of past achievements. The last five years since the 18th National Congress of CPC witnessed great strides made in China’s education sector, as are reflected by multi-dimensional changes, systematic upgrading and historical achievements:

1. Sped-up advancement towards education modernization. During the past five years, the annual state budgetary expenditure on education has been increasing from RMB 2 trillion to over 3 trillion yuan, accounting for more than 4% of the GDP for five consecutive years. Nationwide primary and secondary school internet access rate increased from 25% five years ago to 94% at present. In addition to a cumulative out-turn of 80 million graduates from universities, colleges and technical secondary schools, higher education institutions maintained a National Natural Science Award, National Technical Invention Award and National Scientific and Technological Progress Award recipient rate of 2/3, rendering full support to the implementation of the national innovation-driven development strategy.

2. Significant rise in China’s education popularization rate. 2016 registered a gross enrollment rate of 77.4%, 99.9% and 104% for 3-year preschool, primary and secondary education respectively and a retention ratio of 93.4% for the 9-year compulsory education, all being higher than the average of upper-income countries; 87.5% for senior secondary education; and 42.7% for higher education, higher than the average of upper-middle-income countries. Third-party assessment indicates that overall quality of education in China takes an upper-middle rank in the world.

3. Stronger sense of fulfillment. In accordance with the principle of “not one left behind”, poor rural areas and ethnic group regions were given extra education inputs while an education financial aid system was built upon covering preschool through higher education. The compulsory education attendance rate of handicapped and disabled children reached 90% and above, while special test papers were developed for students with vision disability in national college entrance examination. Governments, schools and related stakeholders worked together to promote education equality and enhance education quality to meet people’s increasing demand for education.

4. Increased international influence. China outperformed most OECD countries in PISA. Higher education institutions moved upward on many world rankings of universities, with some on a par with or close to world-class standards. China has signed agreements on mutual recognition of academic credentials with 47 countries and regions and established education cooperation and exchange relationship with over 180 countries and regions; held over 2500 Chinese-Foreign cooperation school-running institutions or programs and hosted more than 100 bachelor and above degree schools or programs overseas; attracted international students from over 200 countries and regions to become the largest international student destination in Asia and the third largest in the world.

These historic achievements for education in China in the last five years were built upon the past and will carry on, from which we derive greater confidence for the future. Meanwhile, China remains the largest developing country in the world and there are still some problems waiting to be solved in education due to the constraints of development stage and conditions. The principal contradiction facing Chinese society in the new era is between unbalanced and inadequate development and the people's ever-growing needs for a better life. In the context of education, people's ever-growing needs for a better life is manifested in the transition to a quality-oriented education, that is, needs for more diversified forms of education, more resilient and individualized education deliverables, fairer education supply; the unbalanced and inadequate development is manifested in the regional, urban-rural, interschool, and intergroup education gaps as well as weak links in various types and levels of education.

Education in China in the new era is striving to solve the problem of unbalanced and inadequate development so as to meet the people's ever-growing needs for fairer education of better quality. Under the guidance of the spirit of the 19th National Congress of CPC, we will give top priority to education, take the strengthening of education as fundamental to our pursuit of national rejuvenation, speed up education modernization, and develop education that people are satisfied with; we will foster virtue through education, enhance our students' well-rounded development, promote education equity, and nurture a new generation of capable young people who have a good and all-round moral, intellectual, physical, and aesthetical grounding and are well-prepared to join the socialist cause. To be more specific, we will accomplish eight major tasks: First, we will offer students better guidance, expose them to practice, provide institutional guarantees, imbue the entire national education process with the core socialist values, and help students to firmly establish the sense of social responsibility, awareness of rules, and sense of dedication. Second, we will promote the coordinated development of compulsory education in urban and rural areas, while giving particular attention to rural areas; improve preschool education, special needs education, and online education; and make senior secondary education universally available. Third, we will improve the system of vocational education and training, and promote interaction between industry and education as well as cooperation between enterprises and colleges. Fourth, we will move faster to build Chinese universities into world-class universities and develop world-class disciplines as we work to bring out the full potential of higher education. Fifth, we will improve the system of financial aid to students, and work to see that the vast majority of the new members of the urban and rural labor force have received senior secondary education, and that more and more of them receive higher education. Sixth, we will support and regulate the development of private schools. Seventh, we will strengthen the professional ethics and competence of teachers, and encourage public respect for educators. Eighth, we will improve continuing education, step up efforts to build a learning society, and promote the well-rounded development of all our people. To the same end, we will comprehensively deepen education reform, reinforce education-related rule of law and promote IT application in education so as to provide institutional support and condition guarantee for developing state-of-art modern education with Chinese characteristics.

The new era is one in which China constantly make greater contributions for human beings. China will continue its efforts to safeguard world peace, contribute to global development, and uphold international order. China will not close its door to the world; we will only become more and more open. Looking forward to the future, education in China will further enlarge the opening-up scope and constantly raise quality and standards of international education exchange and cooperation. Recently, the Chinese government formulated a number of important documents including the 13th Five-Year Plan for the National Education Development and Action Plan for Education under the Belt and Road Initiative, covering rich contents relating to the education opening-up schemes, layouts and measures as well as global education governance. For restriction of time, now I’d like to move on to several important measures taken by the education sector in China for opening-up and international exchange and cooperation:

1. Efforts to open up education at a higher level and on a higher plane: including efforts to build Chinese universities into world-class universities and develop world-class disciplines; to support research-oriented universities in talent cultivation and scientific breakthroughs in collaboration with world top universities; to support vocational schools bring in high-level foreign experts and quality course resources and encourage interschool teacher and student exchanges; to encourage eligible primary and secondary schools to form sister schools with foreign counterparts for multi-channel educational exchange; to revise and upgrade regulations on Chinese-Foreign cooperation in school running with the aim of brining in quality education resources; to facilitate Chinese higher education institutions to run schools overseas; and to follow closely changes in education content, mode and concepts incurred by new technology revolutions with focused attention on studies and experiments on educational international cooperation in the artificial intelligence era. 

2. Efforts to make contributions to pursuing the Belt and Road Initiative. The Belt and Road Initiative put forward by President XI Jinping in 2013 has gotten high attention and warm response among the international community. In the last 4 years, over 100 countries and international organizations have taken active part in pursuing the Belt and Road Initiative, which not only brought substantial benefits to countries and peoples along the route but also offered historical opportunities for pushing forward the opening up, exchanges and integration of regional education. To this end, Ministry of Education of China formulated in 2016 the Action Plan for Education under the Belt and Road Initiative to make clear the mission, principles and priorities of education cooperation in the region. It is believed that under joint efforts, cooperation will be more pragmatic and efficient in the fields of educational interconnection, talent cultivation, mutual recognition of academic credentials, teacher and student exchanges, and joint school running between countries along the “Belt and Road”.  We also hope that more countries, areas and organizations will become part of education actions in the Belt and Road Initiative. 

3. Efforts to open up new channels for people-to-people exchange between China and other countries.“Friendship, which derives from close contact between the people, holds the key to sound state-to-state relations.” Education, as a great cause of imparting knowledge, spreading culture and shaping the mind, is an important component of the people-to-people exchange as well as heart-to-heart communication. Higher education, in particular, where high-level talents and the most dynamic younger generation assemble, is the highland for the people-to-people exchange between China and other countries. To coordinate and advance the people-to-people exchange, the Chinese government has established high-level exchange mechanism with 8 countries and international organizations. For the next step, we will take on an even more active and open posture in building the intergovernmental education consultation, pragmatic expert and scholar cooperation and teacher-student friendly exchange platforms to attract and involve more social groups in forging brand projects and boost the mutual learning and exchanges between different civilizations characterized by harmony within diversity, inclusiveness, and mutual learning. 

4. Efforts to offer international students quality services. China will make efforts to attract more international students to study in China. Far back in 2010, the Ministry of Education of China enacted the Study in China Project which set the goal of attracting 500,000 international students to primary, secondary and tertiary schools in China by 2020. In 2016, there were 545,000 Chinese students studying abroad and 443,000 overseas students studying in China, both of which would see further expansion in future. To offer better services to international students, the Ministry of Education promulgated in March 2017 the Administrative Measures for the Enrollment and Cultivation of International Students by Schools. We will work further to improve the study abroad service and management system.

Dear Colleagues and Friends,

The Confucius Institute is an important manifestation of China’s education going global and a glorifying example of education exchange and cooperation between China and other countries. As China develops rapidly, there is an increasing demand of people in other countries for learning Chinese and knowing about China, as is reflected by the “China fervor” and “Chinese-learning fervor” around the world that poses rare historical opportunities for the development of CIs. During this conference, delegates offered many constructive comments and suggestions. The 4 speakers before me provided us with relevant information and very good summaries. All these valuable inputs will be carefully sorted out and well reflected into the future work of the Headquarters. I would like now to draw on the deliberations and decisions on the 2018 work plan at the Council meeting yesterday morning and your feedbacks to make several more proposals regarding the development of CIs for your reference:     

1. Remain true to our original aspirations and build up the greatest consensus. When the great way prevails, the world is equally shared by all. In recent years, President XI Jinping reiterated the concept of building a community of shared future for human beings on more than 100 important occasions both at home and internationally, calling on the people of all countries to work together to build an open, inclusive, clean, and beautiful world that enjoys lasting peace, universal security, and common prosperity. This demonstrates the global vision and responsibility of China to synergize its own development with the common development of the world. At present, the important thought of a community of shared future for human beings has been written into documents of the United Nations Security Council, Commission for Social Development and Human Rights Council. UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres pointed out clearly that the purpose of multilateralism is to establish a community of shared future for all humankind. All these are signs that the concept of building a community of shared future for human beings has gradually won the recognition of the international community. In building a community of shared future for human beings, common destiny should be taken as the core, common interest as the basis, common responsibility as crucial, and the notion of civilizations being colorful, equal and inclusive as the premise for replacing estrangement with exchange, clashes with mutual learning, and superiority with coexistence so as to facilitate the heart-to-heart communications and enhance the friendship between nations. The purpose of the CI is to teach Chinese language, and its mission is to promote people-to-people exchange and mutual learning between civilizations, which is highly consistent with the concept of a community of shared future for mankind. Madame Liu Yandong pointed out in her keynote speech at the Opening Ceremony that CIs need to contribute to the building of a community of shared future for mankind, which was thought highly and accepted readily by Chinese and international delegates alike, meaning that we reached the widest consensus regarding the CI mission and ambition. Looking to the future, I hope CIs and CI faculties all over the world will remain true to our original aspirations, bear in mind our missions, work together closely and fight against all kinds of difficulties to build the CI into a world-renowned education and culture community to play a unique role and make significant contributions to the building of a community of shared future for human beings.

2. Set down long-term plans and upgrade relevant institutions and mechanisms. In today’s world, exchange and mutual learning between civilizations have become the trend of the times. There is an increasingly urgent demand among world peoples for learning each other’s language and knowing about each other’s culture. This new situation gave us strong confidence while initiating a strong sense of crisis at the Headquarters as well as CIs worldwide. Many delegates showed their concerns over the strategic considerations and visions for the future development of CIs and looked to the Headquarters for a long-term strategic plan. At the Conference last year, the Headquarters solicited delegates’ feedbacks on the draft Action Plan for Confucius Institute Development, which has been under revisions and improvements this year on the basis of in-depth investigations and researches in over 130 countries. In accordance with the schedule laid down by the Council of the Confucius Institute Headquarters, the Action Plan for Confucius Institute Development will be released officially next year. Meanwhile, the Headquarters will make further studies to revise in due course of time the Constitution and By-Laws of the Confucius Institutes with reference to practical experiences and innovative cases from both sides. These actions are intended of CIs for further optimized global layout, steadily expanded numbers of teachers and students, enhanced education quality, actively serve the Belt and Road Initiative and overall friendly cooperation between China and other countries; and to put in place a well-fledged new management and service system where the Headquarters is shaped as coordinator, partner universities as mainstay, regional (country-specific) centers as service frontline, and CIs as providers of featured services. It is our sincere hope that global CIs will develop or update your constitutions and plans in consideration of local conditions and in accordance with the Action Plan and Constitutions of the Headquarters so that together we may bring the development of CIs to a higher plane.

3. Strengthen capacity building and improve quality standards. With a wide geographical coverage and strong inclusiveness, CIs transcend national and ethnic boundaries to take root in different conditions and cultures. The difficulties and challenges they face are varied, and so they need to constantly strengthen capacity building and enhance educational quality to get adapted. I think, to this end, we need to push hard for the building of a team of professional teachers and directors. We will further expand the reserve of Chinese full-time teachers and directors, recruit more local head teachers and establish teacher training bases so as to put in place a team structure based on the backbone of Chinese full-time teachers and a combination of Chinese and local as well as part- and full-time teachers. In 2018, the Headquarters will draw up specific team building plans on the basis of in-depth investigations and researches to render responsive support and service in this dimension. We need to give more attention to textbook standards. We will build upon the teacher, textbook, pedagogical skills and examination standards. With our International Chinese Textbook Initiative, we intend to develop with focused efforts three sets of quality backbone textbooks, on the Chinese language, culture and contemporary China respectively, which encourage CIs to use on voluntary basis. Meanwhile, we will continue our support to the development of local textbooks and the offering of various languages other than English and culture courses by individual CIs. We need to vigorously advance IT application in teaching practices. With our On-line Teaching Initiative, we intend to encourage wider application of internet, big data and modern technology; provision of MOOC, resource sharing, teacher training and cultural exchange platforms; so that an integrated new-generation Chinese teaching system could come into being. At present, Confucius Institute Online has officially launched its MOOC platform and all CIs are warmly welcome to upload your quality lectures. We encourage the better localization of CIs. Local conditions and cultural differences in the host countries must be fully respected. CIs need to adapt themselves more readily to diversified local needs by developing local teachers, textbooks and lectures so that they can build a strength for themselves and better fit in as an indispensable component of local education and culture.

4. Enable development through innovation and upgrading through transformation. Facing new wishes and new demands coming up from the local community, CIs need to leverage on their past successful experiences, keep up an enterprising spirit, reinforce their reform and innovation capacities, and upgrade themselves through a transformation into the “CI Version 2.0”.  More explorations are needed into resilient and diversified teaching forms. CIs are encouraged to base themselves on local conditions and orient toward featured development in such directions as language teaching, cultural exchange and vocational training. Local governments, enterprises and social groups in the host countries are encouraged to get involved or cooperate with Chinese and international partner universities in establishing CIs. Also encouraged is the collaborative establishment of various centers on Chinese language teaching, China studies and cultural exchanges by partner universities. More explorations are needed into better management of teaching outlets. Currently, all CIs and CCs, the 48 Model CIs in particular, are playing a big role in reaching-out in terms of Chinese language teaching. They now have a total of over 5000 extended teaching outlets and the number of students enrolled in their face-to-face programs is equivalent to half of the global total. Next, it might be viable to put them under our auspices via accreditation coupled with greater teaching staff, curriculum, textbook and examination supports, for a multi-tier (Headquarters-CI-CC-teaching outlets) service operation system to be put in place. More explorations are needed into building up CIs as colleges of universities. We may select a number of Chinese and international partner universities to build trainer training academies on existing CIs to reinforce the pre-service, in-service and special-purpose trainings for global Chinese language teachers. We encourage eligible Chinese and host universities to collaboratively upgrade their CI into an overseas department on voluntary basis so that the two sides are bounded more deeply in discipline building and academic exchanges, which marks at the same time a breakthrough in the education mode of CIs.

Dear Colleagues and Friends,

“Hard to part with a visit short, back to Chang’an in dreams sought”. The 2-day conference is coming soon to a close. Our meeting is but too short; our friendship will last long. We look forward to meeting you again next year at the Conference to write an even brighter future for CIs. So, let us stand hand in hand, shoulder to shoulder in close cooperation to open up new journeys and write new chapters for the development of CIs and make greater contributions to education going global, to people-to-people exchange between China and other countries, and to building a community of shared future for mankind!

Finally, I propose we give a big applause of sincere gratitude to CPC Shaanxi Provincial Committee and Shaanxi Provincial People’s Government, to CPC Xi’an Municipal Committee and Municipal People’s Government, to related universities and colleges in Shaanxi and to our volunteers, who have made painstaking efforts to make this Conference a full success!

The New Year of 2018 is less than 20 days away; please accept my early wishes to all of you for a happy new year, good health, family happiness, and good luck in everything!

I will now proclaim the conclusion of the 12th Confucius Institute Conference. Thank you!

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