David Cameron: ‘Children should learn Mandarin in school instead of French or German’ | UK | News | Daily Express

English: View of The Bund in Shanghai, China.

English: View of The Bund in Shanghai, China. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This is a must-read article by the UK’s Daily Express. It’s an important read. Check it out!

via David Cameron: ‘Children should learn Mandarin in school instead of French or German’ | UK | News | Daily Express.

Personally, I strongly agree with David Cameron’s views on learning Mandarin. Increasing the number of Mandarin speakers in the UK is A STRATEGIC strategic priority.

However, when you reflect on the implications, it raises other stones.

Firstly, it questions the UK’s prevailing and dated education policy, which does not seem to address strategic requirements.

Secondly, it raises the issue of the quality of language teaching in the UK.

Thirdly, it questions the incentivization of British exporters to increase language learning and rotating aspiring managers to Asian markets, like China.


One response

  1. David Cameron and Dr Alf are both right.

    The additional problem is, of course, the length of the UK schoolday, academic rigor and discipline.
    The Chinese school-day is 12 hours long and even longer in South Korea where every child is compelled to learn English.

    In China 650 million people (half the population are being taught English) whereas here we hardly bother with languages. MI5 reckons that the most important languages for the UK are Mandarin, Brazilian Portuguese and Arabic and in that order. Welsh, German, French and European languages do not figure into this equation.

    The purpose of education in the UK should be to equip our young people to compete globally for jobs, exports and contracts because we are now in a state of economic warfare which we are losing.
    This is thanks to an education system which is not fit for purpose, a lazy populace that thinks it has a divine right to be unproductive and go on holiday whenever it likes, teachers who are interested in trendy methods and wow-factor rather than results, local authorities who waste money and fail to “get it”, public sector trades unions who want to preserve the status quo, politicians too cowardly to confront the public with home truths and too big a proportion of female teachers.
    All of this needs to change and change fast, starting with trades union reforms and the de-recognition of public sector trades unions. There will of course be trouble so the Government would need to be prepared to fire and replace strikers en masse in a form of “shock and awe”.

    Trendy headteachers who did not deliver and who refused to adopt the new regime would be put to the sword en- mass and annual holiday entitlements would be cut to 4 weeks until productivity improved.
    The school-day needs to be 12 hours long, with compulsory Saturday education for slow learners.
    Troublesome /sink estate or badly behaved pupils would be taught in boarding schools run by the Army using Army officers as headteachers and ex-soldiers as classroom teachers.

    Languages would be taught using the Pimsleur method plus total immersion.

    At the end of state education or private education, there would be two years of National Service so the country would always have a fully trained reserve of disciplined and fit people to draw upon.

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