U.S. Teen Woos China

The Los Angeles Times has a profile of Kyle Rothstein, an American teenager who started studying Chinese in San Francisco at age 5 and is now starring in a movie about an American teenager living in China:

By the time he was 12, Kyle had met two American presidents, hobnobbed with countless Chinese dignitaries and appeared on four Chinese TV shows. Now 17, Kyle is living in China’s most cosmopolitan city, finishing school and starring in a soon-to-be-released feature film, “Milk and Fashion,” about an American kid growing up in China. His father is the producer.

…In 2000, about 5,000 American elementary and secondary schoolchildren studied Chinese. Today, the number is as much as 10 times that, according to the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages. The College Board offered Advanced Placement exams in Mandarin Chinese for the first time last year, and more than 3,000 high school students took the test.

When Kyle enrolled in San Francisco’s Chinese American International School, the oldest Chinese bilingual elementary school in the country, there were few others like him.

Watch a trailer for Rothstein’s film “Milk and Fashion,” via YouTube:

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