New Taipei aims to become bilingual by 2030

  7123
(Photo courtesy of New Taipei City Education Bureau)

(Photo courtesy of New Taipei City Education Bureau)

New Taipei City Mayor Hou Yu-ih (侯友宜) on Friday (Aug. 21) laid out his vision to make the city bilingual by 2030, a goal that aims to nurture "world citizens" who are willing to speak and use English.

Hou issued the appeal in a meeting at Sanhe Junior High School, which was attended by principals from public and private elementary and secondary schools across the city.

During the meeting, a foreign teacher led several students in a chemical experiment using English to demonstrate how the school has succeeded in combining learning English with academic learning.

Calling on school heads to jointly work toward the goal, Hou said a sound environment must be built across the board to help students learn and speak English naturally in their daily lives.

"We aim to make New Taipei a bilingual and international city by 2030. English education should cater more to people's lives so we can connect with the rest of the world," he said.

New Taipei Education Department chief Chang Ming-wen (張明文) said 100 foreign English teachers will be hired at elementary, junior and senior high schools across the city for the 2020-2021 academic year that starts in September.

"We hope to foster qualified English teachers and cultivate Taiwanese citizens with good English-skills through bilingual classes that are taught with modern teaching methods," Chang said.

When conditions permit it, there will be an "English Day" at all schools every week that provide an immersive English-learning environment through broadcasts, learning activities, simple conversations, and singing songs, he said.