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UK unis eye China teacher training opportunities

The British Chamber of Commerce in China has noted a “considerable and growing demand for qualified teachers in international and bilingual schools” in the country which is unlikely to be met long-term by foreign teachers alone.

trainingThe demand for international teaching qualifications in China is growing. Photo: iStock

200 new international schools have opened in China over the past five years

TNE courses could provide “in-nation teacher training programs and recognised qualifications that can bridge the gap”, it suggested.

“In 2020 the British Chamber held roundtable discussions with our members across the country and almost all participants, from every subsector of education, were adamant that teacher development was a golden opportunity for the UK in China,” said Julian Fisher, vice chair of the British Chamber of Commerce in China and senior partner at education consultancy Venture Education.

“The UK can offer not only top degree-level qualifications, but also practical training, world-leading courses on early years and special educational needs and a range of other qualifications such as CELTA, TESOL and PDQs that are growing in popularity with Chinese educators who want to work in international education in China and abroad.”

The demand for well-trained international and bilingual school staff is growing – 200 new international schools have opened in the country over the past five years.

Among the British universities already offering teacher training programs in China are the Universities of Bath, Derby, Nottingham, Sheffield, Strathclyde, Sunderland, Teeside, East London, Warwick and West of England, and Queen’s University Belfast.

“The demand for highly qualified Chinese teachers with skills in international pedagogy has never been higher in China”

“The demand for highly qualified Chinese teachers with skills in international pedagogy has never been higher in China than it is today,” said David Mansfield of Buckingham International School of Education, which will begin offering a bilingual PGCEi program this year.

“Covid and the changing geopolitical context mean that fewer expat staff can enter China, and those who can are simply too expensive to meet demand in the new bilingual schools.

“Founders and principals are therefore turning to talented returning Chinese and linguistically proficient local Chinese staff to pick up teaching roles in these new schools.”

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