The Cambridge – English for Students of other Languages (ESOL),a body that administrates certificate tests on English Language for students and teachers,is planning a collaboration with the state government to make English language accessible to all groups. This will run along the lines of existing projects in Gujarat and Andhara Pradesh,where students of municipal schools in rural areas are being trained to improve their English language skills. We are in talks with a few universities and also plan to approach the state government to start a low-cost English language project and make it accessible to all students, said T K Arunachalam,marketing manager,ESOL. Last year,the Gujarat Government formed a body called Scope which runs English language courses which has since then been collaborating with ESOL to administer international-level standardised examinations for the students and award them grades.
In Andhara Pradesh,ESOL has been involved with a higher education pilot project which saw 850 rural students taking English level tests. It has improved their job prospects. We ran the first cycle of placements recently for these students with good results, said Arunachalam. ESOL is also planning a free training workshop for teachers by the end of this month.
With a growing economy,the supply of English-speaking people is not sufficient; this is driving people to take certificate level English language courses, said Duncan Rayner,development manager Asia,with Cambridge ESOL,who took the workshop.