Some students at Riverwood International Charter School soon could be speaking a new language: Mandarin Chinese. The school this year added Mandarin to its language program, which offered French, Spanish and Japanese.

“Our goal at Riverwood is to find meaningful learning opportunities that strengthen our internationally-minded curriculum, our student community’s cultural awareness and connectivity, and their preparation to compete in the international arena,” Assistant Principal Opie Blackwell said.

Xiajun Zou, who goes by “Jane,” moved to Riverwood from Alpharetta High School to launch the program.

Joe Earle is Editor-at-Large. He has more than 30-years of experience with daily newspapers, including the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and was Managing Editor of Reporter Newspapers.