TAIPEI (Taiwan News) - To address the expected demand for English-speaking teachers under the Cabinet's vision of turning Taiwan into a Mandarin-English bilingual country by 2030, the Ministry of Education (MOE) announced Thursday a strategic plan, which includes the goal of preparing non-native English-speaking teachers for students from primary to high schools.
The demand for English-speaking teachers is expected to skyrocket in the years to come as schools are set to offer classes taught entirely in English, as planned by the National Development Council (NDC) on Tuesday,
The ministry said the updated twelve-year education curriculum guidelines focus on improving students' English language skills and helping them feel comfortable using English as a medium of communication with people outside the country, with an aim to broaden their horizons and to boost competitiveness, in line with the bilingual policy presented by the NDC.
The ministry presented a strategic plan with five main tactics as below:
- Improve English listening and speaking ability among primary and junior high school students; offer classes or subjects taught entirely in English.
- Include international students, overseas compatriot students in Taiwan and Taiwanese youth raised in English-speaking countries in the teaching system across Taiwan; build up an English language instruction research center, along with courses to cultivate non-native English-speaking graduates as well as teachers to give classes on different subjects through English.
- Integrate digital resources across different platforms from the central and local governments as well as private sectors to maximize the benefits of online learning.
- Expand partnership with schools outside the country; promote study tour abroad; and increase international programs.
- Speed up amendments to the Senior High School Education Act (高級中等教育法) and the Civil Education Act (國民教育法) to facilitate the works.
The ministry indicated that a total of 18 local universities which provide teacher certification programs have agreed to join a non-native English-speaking teacher cultivation program, with an aim to add 2,000 candidates in four years, 3,000 in eight years, and 5,000 in twelve years.
Also, the ministry is planning to provide more incentives to English-speaking teachers working in remote areas to improve their language skills outside of work. The incentives will include a sponsored education program in English-speaking countries during the school's long summer break.