Sat, Aug 12, 2017 - Page 3 News List

MECO offering course in teaching Filipino language

Staff writer, with CNA

The Manila Economic and Cultural Office (MECO) is offering basic training courses for Philippine spouses in the country to serve as teachers of the Philippine national language, Filipino.

The training program was inspired by the administration of President Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) New Southbound Policy and new educational policy, the Philippine representative office in Taiwan said in a statement yesterday.

Starting in September next year, elementary-school students across the nation will be allowed to learn one of seven Southeast Asian languages, while junior and senior-high school students will be able to pick one as an elective course, the Ministry of Education said.

The seven foreign languages on offer are the official languages of Indonesia, Cambodia, Thailand, Myanmar, Philippines, Vietnam and Malaysia.

MECO said that its training program is designed as a preliminary training for the New Residents Language Education Resource Center, which is run by the Ministry of Education.

Once they pass the training, participants would go on to receive official training at the center to become certified teachers, the office said.

Fifty Filipino spouses are expected to finish the preliminary training this year, it added.

The program will not only promote the Filipino language in Taiwan, but will also offer Filipino spouses an additional work opportunity, MECO said.

According to the National Immigration Agency, as of June this year, there were 8,919 Filipino spouses in Taiwan, not including those holding Republic of China identification cards.

Since Tsai took office in May last year, her administration has been promoting its New Southbound Policy, which seeks to advance ties with Southeast and South Asian countries, Australia and New Zealand.

The policy also seeks to enhance cultural and talent exchanges with these countries, Tsai has said.

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