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Native speakers recruited to teach in Taiwan

A significant increase in the number of native English speakers teaching in Taiwanese state schools is planned as part of the island’s ambitious blueprint for Developing Taiwan into a bilingual nation.

Taiwan’s Foreign English Teacher Recruitment Project, in place since 2014, currently recruits 80 native speaker teachers a year. In July, the Ministry of Education announced this would rise to 300 a year, according to a China News Agency report.

Hiring more native speakers has the stated aim of strengthening the English skills of Taiwanese students and sharpening “the country’s competitiveness.” The Ministry claims that a “growing number of schools” have expressed an interest in acquiring native speaker staff.

National Pingtung Senior High School, which has already benefited from native speakers via the scheme, told Focus Taiwan that foreign teachers taking part in the cultural life of the school outside class has “emboldened” students in practicing their English for “everyday life”.

Image courtesy of WIKIMEDIA COMMONS
Matt Salusbury
Matt Salusbury
MATT SALUSBURY, news editor and journalist, has worked for EL Gazette since 2007. He is also joint Chair of the London Freelance Branch of the National Union of Journalists and co-edits its newsletter, the Freelance. He taught English language for 15 years in the Netherlands, in Turkey, in a North London further education college and now as an English for Academic Purposes tutor, most recently at the London School of Economics. He is a native English speaker and is also fluent in Dutch.
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