DOT 7 extends efforts to boost ESL industry
Ehda M. Dagooc (The Freeman) - November 22, 2019 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines — While students of English as Second Language (ESL) from non-English speaking countries in Asia are growing in number, the Department of Tourism (DOT-7) also steps up to boost this particular market.

DOT-7 regional director Shalimar Tamano said that Cebu and the Central Visayas region will lead in organizing the community of ESL providers, in order for the government to extend help in the sector.

Tamano noted that ESL schools here are also providing tourism-related services such as island hopping, stay-in facilities for foreign students, and tour guiding, among others.

While this is a boost to attract more ESL students from other countries like Taiwan, China, Japan and the Korea, there is also a need for the government to assist the providers in ensuring tourists-students safety.

Roughly, there are about 100 ESL online and offline schools operating in Cebu, making the province the country’s ESL capital.

Taiwanese ESL students are the fastest growing nationality learning English in Cebu.

He said these students who stay at from one week to three months spend not only for tuition but also for sightseeing, shopping, among others.

ESL schools have to be licensed by TESDA, accredited by DOT, and students should have special student permits (SSP) issued by Bureau of Immigration.

At present, DOT is still conducting a survey to quantify the number of ESL students in Cebu.

“This is still a new industry,” Tamano said explaining why DOT wants to assist the players.

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