Beijing has scrapped plans to require all kindergartens to offer English by 2015. Image from http://www.ebeijing.gov.cn/
A shortage of qualified teachers was sited as one of the primary obstacles to realizing the ambitious plan, which was proposed last July as part of an internationalization project by the city’s municipal foreign affairs office.
Other bits and bobs remain on the plan, which if realized will help the city’s overall strategy to make the city more hospitable to international visitors and residents.
Among the plans to be realized by 2015:
* 90% of all taxi drivers and public transport personnel should be able to say 100 to 300 everyday English sentences;
* All public hotlines — aka emergency numbers such as 110, 120, 999 and 119 — should offer 24-hour service in 8 languages — English, French, Spanish, Russian. Arabic, Japanese and Korean;
* 80% of all police and front-line urban management personnel under 40 years old should be able to pass the primary examination for Oral English;
* All civil servants with a university degree should be able to speak at least 1000 English sentences.