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Grace pushes to save Filipinos edge in English proficiency

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Sen. Grace Poe is worried over the reported decline in English proficiency of Filipino students which has slumped to lower than the proficiency target set for high school students in Thailand and competency requirement for taxi drivers in Dubai.

Poe has filed Senate resolution No. 622 directing the appropriate Senate committees to conduct the inquiry in the light of reports of narrowing advantage of Filipino graduates in the global language.

This is to assess the present curricula in elementary and high school and encourage trainings and other learning approaches.

The wide use of English and excellent command of spoken English continued to be the biggest advantage the Philippines , Poe said.

But a recent study showed that Filipino graduates’ English edge has been narrowing, Poe said citing the results of a two-year study conducted by Hopkins International Partners.

The said study showed that Filipino university graduates averaged 630 on English proficiency based on the Test of English for International Communication (TOEIC), an outcome lower than the competency requirement for taxi drivers in Dubai and lower than proficiency target set for high school students in Thailand and Vietnam.

Poe pressed the need for the Senate inquiry with the end view of assessing the present curricula in elementary and high school.

“The academe should review current curricula to improve teaching and learning of English while the private sector, including non-government organizations, must step up efforts to improve the competitiveness of the Filipino labor pool,” she said.

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