Heritage College-Ready Academy High School
Some very fortunate students at Heritage College-Ready Academy High School are learning Mandarin and Wushu, a Chinese martial art, taught by Master Hu Jianqiang, a founder of the U.S. Shaolin Wushu Center. The courses, which are free to Heritage students and meet twice a week for 12 weeks, represent a collaboration between the UCLA Confucius Institute and After-School All-Stars.
Heritage College-Ready Academy High School serves 538 students in grades 9-12. It is operated by Alliance College-Ready Public Schools, an independent non-profit charter management organization that has grown to 18 high performance small public high schools and middle schools created in Los Angeles between 2004 and 2010.
Heritage High School was chosen after administrators of the Confucius Institute were impressed with the level of interest shown by the students. The program features Master Hu, a twice WuShu World Champion and former film star in tandem with a Chinese culture/language class.
Rosa Reyes, a 10th grader interested in possibly becoming a veterinarian, said she loves the Wushu because it is physical challenging and highly recommends the whole experience. She has made new friends while learning quite a bit of Mandarin.
Jesus Correa, a 12th grader interested in George Fox University in Oregon, was also one of the 12 students from Heritage enrolled in the program. He wanted to learn Mandarin since it’s a language spoken in most of the world.
The school’s principal also got involved in the program and began attending the classes. In addition to the learning opportunity, the student who demonstrated the most dedication received an all-expense paid trip to Shanghai for two weeks.