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English Teacher Training Program Kicks off
Twenty-five primary school English teachers from throughout south China's Guangdong Province have left for Britain for three months of training in teaching English at the University of Leeds.

They are among 140 people specially selected for a program designed to train more English teachers as from last September Guangdong has offered English courses from Grade III. The remaining 115 people will go to Britain in three other groups.

During their stay in Britain, the trainees will learn methods for teaching children English and skills to tutor other teachers.

Some 25,000 English teachers were needed to achieve the goal of offering English courses from Grade III, said a local official in charge of educational affairs.

The province is organizing on-job training among existing primary school English teachers, plus recruiting more such teachers.

The English teacher training program has won support from the British government.

Justin Gilbert, cultural and education consul with the British Consulate General based in Guangzhou, capital of Guangdong, said he hoped various training camps would boost the training of primary school English teachers in the whole of Guangdong.

Meanwhile, Sino-British educational cooperation is also illustrated by the founding last month of a Sino-British teacher training and resources center in Guangdong Foreign Languages Normal School.

There has been a craze for learning English across China since last July when the national capital Beijing won its bid to hold the 2008 Olympic Games and the country was admitted into the World Trade Organization later the same year.

Xinhua News Agency April 15, 2002)

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