how long would it take me to learn mandarin;?

hey i was wondering how long it would take me to learn mandarin chinese because i will be travelling in china for about a year after high school, currently in gr.10, and i want to know how long it will take to learn it fluently, ive heard people say a few months, and others say 5 years and even some people 10 years, i want to know al least the basics so for once i go and im probably going to start classes at the latest this time next year and will be going to china in approximatley 3 years so how much do you think i could learn starting from say a few months till then? also like some people say it takes like a decade [10 years :P] to learn it but then like learning english from scratch took me 5 years, i was fluent when i was 5 who wasn’t and the chinese children obviously learn from scratch and learn it fluently in the same amount it would take a child over here in north america right because if it took them 10 years then how the hell would they do school so any help or advice would be great and i live in london ontario so anyone who knows of a good mandarin class place there if u could mention one that would be great!

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