9th August 2004
SEC Vietnam: An Exciting New Frontier

This has been a very active and productive few months for Saxoncourt operations in Vietnam, currently based at the two Shane English Centres in Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon).

Ever since SEC Vietnam was awarded a licence by the Vietnamese government to operate as a fully foreign-owned company in December 2003, development of our services to English students has continued apace, with an ever-expanding range of courses now being offered.

At the time of writing, more than 320 children study at Shane schools here, all using Saxoncourt ELT texts such as FAB, SPEC and Lift Off with English. We’ve built a very strong reputation in this area, thanks to the efforts of a team of dedicated, enthusiastic British and Canadian teachers, well supported by friendly and professional local staff. Importantly, all of our teaching staff are thoroughly trained and prepared for working with young learners, with the Saxoncourt Teaching English to Young Learners (TEYL) course being compulsory.

One of our branches operates a very successful International Pre-School, at which our young students study English and Vietnamese in the mornings, and work in a 100% English environment in the afternoon. Shane Vietnam’s project-based approach to language learning is one that they enjoy immensely, and we saw our first class graduate this summer, with all the children having obtained a level of English that will serve them very well as they enter primary schooling.

The next few months will see the introduction of the STYLE (Saxoncourt Test for Young Learners of English) test to Vietnam, with our schools becoming the country’s first test centres. Thus Vietnam will join other Asian countries such as Thailand, Taiwan, China and Japan in having access to this world-renowned examination system for children.

The second half of 2004 will also see us focus on our adult market. Not only will we offer our standard general English courses, but we will aim to diversify, offering high-quality preparation for the IELTS and TOEFL examinations, as well as working in close association with Shane Language Services in Japan to produce tailored business and vocational courses catering to the needs of corporate clients across the city.

Lastly we’re delighted to announce that starting from this September, Shane English Centre Vietnam will be the training centre for all GAP volunteers with teaching placements across the country. They will spend a week with us studying basic teaching techniques and methodology, along with local orientation modules, prior to taking up their placements. This is a really exciting prospect for us, and we look forward to welcoming the first batch of 30-40 keen young teachers next month.

Web links:
SEC Vietnam: www.shanevn.com
GAP Activity Projects: www.gap.org.uk

Lawrence Smith, Shane English Centres Vietnam

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