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Keep toxic foreign teachers away from kids

China Daily | Updated: 2019-07-12 07:25

A group of children in a Japanese preschool do crafts on Aug 9. Provided To China Daily

ON WEDNESDAY, the local police in Xuzhou city, East China's Jiangsu province, said that they had caught 19 suspected drug-takers, seven of them foreign teachers employed by EF Education and nine of them students. ThePaper.cn comments:

The case is rather shocking. According to reports, EF Education has four branches in the city, employing about 60 foreign English teachers, which means that more than 10 percent of its teachers are being detained by the police. EF Education has said that it will render support to the police and dismiss the seven foreign teachers.

But EF needs to not only dismiss the foreign teaching staff involved, but also conduct thorough checks when hiring its foreign teachers. Education as a profession needs to have a high threshold so that children are protected.

Although it is one extreme case, it has deepened public concerns about the quality of foreign teachers. There is a national standard that requires foreign English language teaching staff to have a bachelor's degree, two years' work experience, to come from a country with English as the mother tongue and not have a criminal record. Yet too many foreign teachers have a low educational background, little working experience, and some of them come from non-English speaking countries. For these "teaching staff", English is a foreign language, yet with the help of certain domestic agencies, they are employed to teach English in some domestic education institutions.

That requires the national education supervision department to do their job well. The national standard for foreign teaching staff must be strictly implemented so as to prevent such a case from happening again. Educational institutions must adopt a highly responsible attitude toward children and education. They should strengthen their qualification reviews and daily management of foreign teachers, instead of blindly seeking profits.

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