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October 2013

Learning curve

The four-part documentary Why Don’t You Speak English? recently aired on Channel 4 in the UK. It opens in veteran Esol teacher Anya Williams’s class, which includes students who had been in the UK for at least two years but failed to pick up ‘the most basic English’. There follows a ‘fast track’ for four students – Agnieszka from Poland, Apple (a ‘trailing partner’ from China), masters-qualified oil engineer Fabian (pictured) who fled violence in Colombia, and

By Matt Salusbury

UK Finance minister George Osborne, announcing a government spending review in June, told lawmakers, ‘From now on, if [welfare] claimants don’t speak English, they will have to attend language courses until they do.’ He added, ‘If you’re not prepared to learn English, your benefits will be cut,’ promising that this and other welfare changes would save £350 million.

Although the Daily Mail newspaper reported that benefit claimants with poor English ‘will have to take classes to get up to “entry level two” – the standard expected of the nine-year-olds’,

Publishing giant Cengage Learning filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection at the beginning of July in the US. Created in 2007, Cengage is private equity backed but is in debt to the tune of billions of dollars.

Michael Hansen, who was appointed CEO last August, told the Financial Times he

September 2013

Under construction

As of 21 August 2013, EL Gazette's website has now been extensively redesigned, with lots of new features. These include a new job advertisements page and a glossary of international English language-teaching related jargon.

This site will carry a small selection of our recent news stories, interviews and features on education policy. Additionally, you can still view pdfs with all the content of recent back issues of the print edition at EL Gazette digital. (You will need to register for it, but it's free, there's a short tutorial on how to register and how to use its search function here.)

We are aware that there are still a few glitches with the new-style website that still need ironing out, such as the text in some of the sidebars, and we are working to update the content and links in some of the 'resources' pages.