An advisory panel to the Education Ministry has recommended to the ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) that Japan increases the number of foreign English teachers at schools to 10,000 from the current 4,360 by reviving the JET program.
According to a report in the Nikkei Shimbun, the government's goal is to cultivate global human resources in Japan by dispatching native English speakers to all elementary, middle, and high schools within 10 years.
Already many Japanese business have been prioritizing English skill when hiring and promoting employees. For example, Japan's biggest e-commerce company Rakuten has changed its official language from Japanese to English. Uniqlo has done likewise. SoftBank recently announced a policy to boost its employees' English skill by rewarding them with bonus payments if they get top marks in an English-proficiency test for non-native speakers, known as TOEIC. Those who score 800 or higher will get 300,000 yen.
As the pillar for its policy, the government is planning to revive the JET program which was considered wasteful spending by the Democratic Party of Japan back in 2010. However, the LDP says the program is necessary to promote English education in Japan, as well as boost Japan's competitiveness on the global stage.© Japan Today