International Education in China
22 chapters and 27,000 words plan China’s future educational initiatives. The pledges amongst these pages promise a future China that is more dedicated to quality education, available to all. Amongst the proponents of this large document, many seek to vastly change the face of “international education” programs that are present in public schools in China today. There are those that wish to abolish it entirely, but most merely seek to increase quality by developing standards, reforms and requirements to decrease the presence of inefficiency and corruption. With such vast changes taking place by the year 2020, programs, such as AEF, must have a competitive advantage. In order to create a more sustainable, long-term international education program, AEF must develop and implement a higher quality plan of action, based on sound educational theory and forward-thinking marketing practices. At the foundation of any effective language program are good teachers. In the four years I’ve been working for AEF, it has struggled to find and keep good teachers, especially foreign teachers. There are three things that can remedy this problem. First, an effective interview process must be developed. An effective interview process includes comprehensive questions that accurately: distinguishes between different candidates, confirms confidence in the teacher’s ability, discovers motivation in their search for a job, and provides a detailed explanation of their teaching qualifications. Second, effective training methods must be used. Effective training methods instill confidence in teachers, giving them the exact tools they need to begin implementing proven teaching methods. Third, effective curriculum/course materials must be developed to more efficiently provide students with knowledge of English communication. Providing opportunities to practice isn’t enough; varying, fun, creative lessons must be designed to engage students in communication, giving them aim in their educational goals. I’ve seen, time and time again, that AEF has fallen short in all three of these areas. The characters I’ve met among the foreign teachers AEF has hired in the last 4 years have been unconfident, unqualified, and their motivation for obtaining a teaching position has nothing to do with educating children. Those few teachers that were quality, AEF wasn’t able to keep them longer than one year because of poor management. There has also been zero training. AEF has wasted money flying teachers to Dalian, or flying “foreign teacher managers” to local schools, in order to “train”, but absolutely nothing was accomplished in any of these circumstances. Finally, the curriculum/course materials AEF uses are terrible. I’ve researched and read thousands of ESL textbooks, and AEF’s Go Beyond textbook series ranks among the worst books I’ve seen. They’re riddled with errors, improperly organized, and don’t provide students with the vital elements I talked about before that are needed in an ESL program. I realize they’re very profitable, but should only be used as a supplement to something of higher quality if AEF wants to improve the educational quality, and in turn, the speed at which their students improve in English communication. In contrast to this, let’s look at the best language program in China today, Wallstreet English. I’ve researched this program thoroughly, as I know many teachers that work there. I’ve been able to attend their classes, talk about their program and study their course materials. This very successful program has an accurate, comprehensive interview process, proven, in depth training program and the best materials you will find in the field of ESL. They are so successful because they have developed these things using international standards, and leading research in the English education. In managing teachers, AEF must continue to make sure these theories are being practiced throughout the school year. After...
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