Our English Center was filled with students yesterday when I arrived at 4:30. There was a lot of talk about our upcoming English Talent Show contest, taking place tomorrow night. I’ll be judging and enjoying students singing, reciting poetry and giving speeches, all in English.
But the other news concerned the school’s move.
The provincial government had given us 1 semester, but now it seems the Chongzuo city government nixed that idea. We are moving at the end of this semester. The schedule was sent out yesterday to all the teachers, with classes ending on July 13 and movers coming to the school July 27. Everything goes, including our English Center.
Some of the students are happy with this decision while others are sad in leaving our smalltown environment. They’ll be closer to home in the new school but certainly not closer to the town for shopping ventures or eat-outs with friends and classmates. Plus the grounds here are so beautiful. In Chongzuo, the campus is so new that the recently planted trees and grass haven’t taken firm root. The sizzling sun dries everything up so fast, leaving dead trees and dried up brown grass behind.
The English Center on the New Campus
For our English Center students, the news is quite exciting. I have talked to our dean, Liang Ling, and she put in a request for an English Center room on the new campus. She reported to me this morning that it’s 4 times as large as the one we have now, plus it’s on the 2nd floor. No longer will students have to suffer the great climb upward, 6 flights, to finally alight panting and out-of-breath at the entrance to our tiny Center. Unless you’re my student, a majority here don’t even know we have an English Center because it’s in such an out-of-the-way place. On the new campus, the EC will be in direct student traffic and easily accessible to all.
Our volunteers should have good turn-outs every day with many students filling the room, watching movies, reading magazines or checking out books. Such a shame I won’t be seeing that happen as I’ll be gone, settling into my old routines in Luzhou once again.
But there is no need to say “Goodbye” to the English Center as yet. We still have over a month of enjoying our lovely views from the 6th floor and chatting about summer vacation plans plus upcoming finals.
Here’s wishing you Ping An (peace) and a great weekend, from everyone’s final weeks in Longzhou.