Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Learning English in Bangladesh

In Bangladesh, you can pick up your cell phone and dial 3-0-0-0 for a three-minute English lesson.  The call costs just five cents.  Launched in November, 2009, Janala (which means "window") is the brainchild of the World Service Trust, the charity arm of the BBC.  Speaking English is considered the passport to a better life, a way to open up jobs in the textile market and in service industries such as banking.  With Janala, after eighteen months of making a three-minute call a day, five days a week, the students will have learned conversation, pronunciation and basic English grammar.  The goal is to teach six million people by 2011.  It sounds like they are well on their way.  On launch day, 25,000 calls were expected; 80,000 calls were actually placed.

(Information gleaned from the April 10 edition of World Vision Report and the BBC World Service Trust website.)

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