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seneca Post time: 2017-8-27 11:05
You disagree with me out of sheer unfamiliarity with the topic, mate! Nobody owes Deng anything. ...
Nobody owes Deng anything. He did not invent the concept of Foreign English Teachers For China [...] Whether that was due to the opening-up policy or not is irrelevant
I think that it is relevant in understanding why the situation is what it is. China went from "glorious to be poor" to "glorious to be rich" overnight, after only recently wasting a generation of education in cultural revolution.
As a result, China had lot of catching up with rest of the world to do in many aspects, and one of those is proficiency in English language.
China in a short time trained its own English teachers for the whole nation.
If that is the case, then why so few Chinese today know no English? Don't just think of the English language education here, because the education system as whole was screwed (and partially continues to be) and great English textbooks or even teachers do not help in that situation.
Having failed to learn English properly themselves (with whatever system was in place in those years), Chinese parents today think, that a faster/better way to have their children learn English is to have foreigners come teach English.
The majority of them are dispassionate, disinterested. Teaching a foreign language after all is a tricky job: with one foot you stand on enemy territory; how can you make sure that the other foot does not lose balance on home territory?
I think that here you picked up a prime reason for the observed lack of passion or interest.
With passionate interest in learning another language, comes (or should come) interest to the culture that the language reflects. And there are some well known limitations with that in China.
Such limitations would not exist in many other countries, which explains why local English teachers perform better there than in China.
If you are a Chinese teacher of English language, you can only go so far with interest in other English affairs, before your career gets politically blocked for showing too much interest in such.
You work in education - how many headmasters or other leading characters in Chinese schools do you know, who would not be members of the party?
I discussed this matter couple of years ago with expat group where I live, and it was mentioned that in recent years many of the headmasters in local institutions had been rotated to make sure that the party is in control.
But such official institutions are a drop in the ocean in my opinion. The market for unqualified foreign teachers is not there, but in extra-curricular training centres and other off-the-grid operations. I know for example art schools for preschool children, who have foreigners to give English classes on the side.