Starting as a small, family-oriented school to support a growing Mandarin-speaking community, the SCV Chinese School now teaches the language to hundreds of Santa Clarita Valley families. “When we started, most of the students were Chinese families with (Chinese) heritage,” said Jinghong Li, 53, of Santa Clarita. “Now, it’s more mainstream, students with families who recognize the benefits of learning this language and see its future importance." Li, who’s the school’s executive director and founding principal, is an engineer by trade who earned a master’s degree at the University of Virginia, came to the Santa Clarita Valley more than 20 years ago to work with 3D printing, after teaching at the University of Dayton. Li saw the need in his own family as well as others, he said, when he opened the school five years ago.