Ambassador Carlson discusses highlights of the teacher training workshop with university professors from Mindanao.

In a bid to enhance English language instruction in the Philippines, the United States government has organized a series of intensive training workshops for over 100 English teachers from across the country. The workshops, taking place from May 8 to 26, aim to equip educators with enhanced teaching methods and skills.

The curriculum for these workshops follows a “training the trainers” approach, specifically designed for the Philippines by U.S.-sponsored English Language Specialists, Donna Brinton and Jan Frodesen. The program is expected to have a far-reaching impact, benefiting more than 7,000 teachers and approximately 250,000 students in the Philippines. Participants will be prepared to lead follow-on training sessions with their colleagues in local communities.

Brinton and Frodesen highlighted that the program shares valuable information, strategies, and techniques that will enable participants to train fellow educators in their home communities effectively. By empowering teachers to become trainers themselves, the program aims to create a ripple effect of knowledge dissemination and improve English language instruction nationwide.

The workshops commenced in Manila, where over 60 teachers from academic institutions in Mindanao received training during the first two weeks. Among the participants were educators from public high schools in Basilan, Sulu, and Tawi-Tawi, regions known for their linguistic diversity. Additionally, 12 teachers from the State Department’s English Access Microscholarship Program, including participants from Fiji, joined the Manila program, fostering cross-cultural exchange and collaboration.

The final set of workshops, scheduled from May 22 to 26, will be hosted in Puerto Princesa, Palawan, where more than 50 educators from various campuses of Palawan State University will participate. This inclusive approach ensures that teachers from diverse backgrounds and regions in the Philippines can benefit from the program.

To reaffirm the United States’ commitment to supporting quality education in the Philippines, especially in language learning, U.S. Ambassador to the Philippines, MaryKay Carlson, met with workshop participants on May 17. Ambassador Carlson emphasized the significance of a robust educational system for national prosperity and expressed optimism about the positive results that will emerge as dedicated Filipino educators share the acquired methods with their peers and students.

The success of these workshops was made possible through collaborative efforts between the U.S. government and key Philippine partners, including the Ministry of Basic, Higher, and Technical Education in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao, the National Commission on Muslim Filipinos, the non-government organization Synergeia Foundation, Inc., and Palawan State University.

As the workshops progress, Filipino educators are enthusiastic about the knowledge and skills they will acquire, which will ultimately contribute to the improvement of English language instruction throughout the country. With increased proficiency in English, Filipino students will have greater opportunities for success, both locally and on the global stage.