Saturday, 24 May 2008

No English in the English Faculty.

I'm not sure how many class rooms, offices and audio visual rooms are part of the English Faculty, but the block I work in is a five storied block with 6 classrooms on each floor. I know there are more, but have no idea where they are.

We think it is strange that the "English Faculty" uses NO ENGLISH. Our class details are all in Chinese (which of course we can't read) and we are often required to sign class attendance sheets, requests for photocopying - all in Chinese.

All notices on the noticeboard are in Chinese. We have no idea if we are expected to read them. And of course we don't. I understand notices were sent to teachers about the three days of mourning and the three minutes silence re the earthquake - but it never came to us. We didn't even get a notice in Chinese on this one.

Even in a university which is supposedly a "foreign language" college, there is little consderation given to any language other than Chinese. It also makes it very hard for the students learning Chinese as they are not encouraged to speak English - and there are no English posters, and so forth. It is hard to get them to speak English in class - except for specific class work. Try as I might, I often have no idea if they are talking about me!

When I visited the hair dresser some days ago there was no sign of English - except for one sign that appears over the entrance doorway when the store is open. Just one word "DOPEN" which I guess means that they are open!!!

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