Going native

El Pais yesterday had another two page article on the status of foreign languages, particularly English, in the educational system. To my mind there was little new apart from a more clearly focused discussion on whether or not native speakers are a good idea. The conclusion, by all concerned including representatives from the Instituto Cervantes and the British Council, is that native speakers are useful, but only if they know what they are doing, in other words, if they are also teachers. Nothing controversial there!


In the same edition of the paper the cultural section had an article on how the financial crisis is forcing the Instituto Cervantes to close various of its centers around the world. When the going gets tough the natives get moving!


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