Vietnam to bring in more native speakers to teach English

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The Vietnamese Ministry of Education and Training has signed an agreement with an Australian school to bring thousands of volunteer teachers from English speaking countries to Vietnam, Dan Tri reported Friday.

The volunteer teachers from Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, South Africa, the United Kingdom and the United States, will come to Vietnam under the "Teach & Travel Vietnam" program, which will assign them to local schools, colleges, and universities.

The program was launched by the Sydney-based English Language Company (ELC), to offer people opportunities to teach and travel in Vietnam, learn Vietnamese and study local culture.

Nguyen Ngoc Hung, an official with the education ministry, told the news website that the program aims to "enhance the English competence of students and improve the communication skills of Vietnamese teachers."

The Ministry of Education and Training and the ELC will make a detailed plan for the recruitment, management and allocation of teachers, according to Hung.

The Australian company agreed to train teachers and issue them English teaching certificates before sending them to Vietnam.

Between 300 and 500 of them will come to Vietnam each year, he said. They will be paid a VND6 million stipend each month for teaching approximately 19 hours per week.

Hung told Nguoi Lao Dong on January 17 that this payment is only to support the teachers in their basic accommodation costs.

The agreement between the education ministry and the ELC is part of Australia's support of Vietnam's "Nation's Foreign Language Project through 2020" in honor of the 40th anniversary of diplomatic ties between the two nations, according to Dan Tri.

During a signing ceremony on January 16, the Vietnamese ministry also made an arrangement with Greg Ellis, an Aussie teacher and education software developer, to acquire interactive software Vietnamese students can use to improve their English skills. 

Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung in 2008 approved the project to improve the teaching and learning of foreign languages in Vietnam through 2020, including attracting overseas Vietnamese and foreigners to teach in the country.

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