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Fri Dec 14, 2012, 05:39 AM

Ed Miliband: every Briton should speak English

Staff in all publicly funded jobs who interact with members of the public will have to show proficiency in the English language under a Labour government, Ed Miliband will announce on Friday.

Outlining a major initiative to improve social integration in Britain, the Labour leader will say that every citizen should know how to speak English.

Miliband will make proficiency in the English language a key priority for a future Labour government, which would seek to achieve what he calls a "connected nation" rather than a "segregated one".

In a speech in London on Friday morning, Miliband will outline a three-point plan:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2012/dec/14/miliband-english-language-integration

23 replies, 1852 views

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Arrow 23 replies Author Time Post
Reply Ed Miliband: every Briton should speak English (Original post)
dipsydoodle Dec 2012 OP
Turbineguy Dec 2012 #1
T_i_B Dec 2012 #6
muriel_volestrangler Dec 2012 #8
T_i_B Dec 2012 #9
non sociopath skin Dec 2012 #2
dipsydoodle Dec 2012 #3
oldironside Dec 2012 #4
T_i_B Dec 2012 #5
non sociopath skin Dec 2012 #7
Starboard Tack Dec 2012 #12
LeftishBrit Dec 2012 #10
dipsydoodle Dec 2012 #11
Jeneral2885 Dec 2012 #13
dipsydoodle Dec 2012 #14
Nihil Dec 2012 #15
geardaddy Dec 2012 #23
geardaddy Dec 2012 #16
non sociopath skin Dec 2012 #17
geardaddy Dec 2012 #18
non sociopath skin Dec 2012 #19
geardaddy Dec 2012 #20
non sociopath skin Dec 2012 #21
geardaddy Dec 2012 #22

Response to dipsydoodle (Original post)

Fri Dec 14, 2012, 05:44 AM

1. Fock!

That's discrimnation against people from Yorkshire!

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Response to Turbineguy (Reply #1)

Fri Dec 14, 2012, 07:31 AM

6. Now now, just cos we're getting the Tour De France next year!

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Response to T_i_B (Reply #6)

Fri Dec 14, 2012, 12:39 PM

8. 'Appen you're getting t'Tour of France, wit' Big Start, now

None of this fancy French, lad.

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Response to muriel_volestrangler (Reply #8)

Fri Dec 14, 2012, 03:17 PM

9. We'll see if we can replace the yellow jersey.....

...With a yellow flat cap!

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Response to dipsydoodle (Original post)

Fri Dec 14, 2012, 06:27 AM

2. A perfectly worthy aim IMHO ....

... but it will be interesting to see whether it's presented as an entitlement or a diktat.

I'd also be interested in how Miliband would intend the programme to be delivered. The cynic in me sees a thousand bargain-basement Mickey Mouse "Schools of Language" blooming to little purpose ....

One "respectable" private TESL college not a million miles from here uses its trainees to give free English lessons to refugees and asylum seekers as teaching practice. The Deputy Principal told one cohort (in my presence), that it didn't matter how bad their teaching was or how many mistakes they made because "these people aren't paying us anything".

And that's the top end of the market ....

The Skin

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Response to non sociopath skin (Reply #2)

Fri Dec 14, 2012, 06:46 AM

3. Do you land up with some Julios ?

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Response to non sociopath skin (Reply #2)

Fri Dec 14, 2012, 06:54 AM

4. Having worked in private language schools...

... I can tell you you are absolutely right. I have seen people employed to teach English who didn't have the first clue about it, but most school owners only worry about the bottom line. One guy who had left school at sixteen and found work in Essen as a barman was given a job teaching business English to executives and another incompetent thought it was enough to tell beginner students incredibly long boring anecdotes as though he was talking to his mates in the pub. Their jobs were safe because they were cheap and willing to do extra hours.Still, that's private enterprise for you, even if it would make some of my old teacher trainers throw their hands up in despair.

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Response to dipsydoodle (Original post)

Fri Dec 14, 2012, 07:22 AM

5. Immigrants insist politicians learn to speak English

An immigrant has apologised for his previous policy of nodding and smiling politely, and is now insisting politicians should learn to speak English.

“I’ve lived here most of my life, and I cannot understand what it on earth they are talking about”, complained postal worker Ahmed Kahn. “If you complain they just start waving their hands about, and repeating themselves, louder and louder.”

With millions spent each year on translating horse shit into something the public might go for, Kahn thinks the time has come to stop pandering to them.

“Politicians are bleeding this country dry”, he insisted. “They come here from where they really live, and get a free house in the constituency and another one in London, which they fill up with their relatives.”


Ed Miliband robustly defended politicians, pointing out they’re legally if not morally entitled to seek sanctuary in a big asylum by the Thames. “I’b beed berpectly frank oboud wob be neeb do do ob dis issue”, he stated clearly. Be neeb do debt ub a deering commidy and a parliamendary enquiry.”


Read more: http://newsthump.com/2012/12/14/immigrants-insist-politicians-learn-to-speak-english/#ixzz2F1oUuBg3

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Response to T_i_B (Reply #5)

Fri Dec 14, 2012, 12:07 PM

7. Not a chance.

If we understood what they really meant they'd all be on what's left of Jobseekers' Allowance.

The Skin

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Response to T_i_B (Reply #5)

Sat Dec 15, 2012, 03:03 PM

12. Hilarious!

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Response to dipsydoodle (Original post)

Fri Dec 14, 2012, 05:44 PM

10. No problem with this, as long as the funding is provided for teaching English.

Everyone needs to learn the language of their country, or they will always be disadvantaged.

It's not a panacea, but it's one of the things people need.

But as I say, if the government requires it, the government needs to fund it, or people will fall through the net or get fleeced by tenth-rate language schools.

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Response to LeftishBrit (Reply #10)

Fri Dec 14, 2012, 06:05 PM

11. Couldn't agree more

State funded / assisted tuition at existing colleges / schools - not Micky Mouse private schools. I mentioned assisted because even we have to pay for night school whatever.

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Response to dipsydoodle (Original post)

Sat Dec 15, 2012, 05:54 PM

13. So...

If you're local kebab or Chinese or ethic food seller can't speak English, will he be deported under a new Labour govt?

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Response to Jeneral2885 (Reply #13)

Sat Dec 15, 2012, 06:01 PM

14. I've never come across an "ethnic" food seller who couldn't speak english

Matey peeps.

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Response to Jeneral2885 (Reply #13)

Mon Dec 17, 2012, 11:24 AM

15. I doubt it but you might have to watch out ...

> If you're local kebab or Chinese or ethic food seller can't speak English,


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Response to Nihil (Reply #15)

Fri Dec 21, 2012, 11:30 AM

23. Brilliant!

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Response to dipsydoodle (Original post)

Mon Dec 17, 2012, 03:06 PM

16. Just as long as this isn't a way into

Denying the rights of Welsh or Gaelic speakers.

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Response to geardaddy (Reply #16)

Tue Dec 18, 2012, 05:55 AM

17. Now there's a hypothesis worthy of our attention

If an immigrant living in North Wales or the West of Scotland opted to learn Welsh or Gaelic rather than English, would that be OK and would funding be made available?

The Skin

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Response to non sociopath skin (Reply #17)

Tue Dec 18, 2012, 10:42 AM

18. I think in Wales it is acceptable for an immigrant

to learn Welsh as their new language. I doubt it happens very often, but the opportunity is there.

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Response to geardaddy (Reply #18)

Tue Dec 18, 2012, 12:36 PM

19. So, for example, are you able to take the citizenship test in Welsh?

The Skin

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Response to non sociopath skin (Reply #19)

Tue Dec 18, 2012, 12:50 PM

20. I believe you are.

I'll have to check though.

ETA: According to Wikipedia: Legally, sufficient knowledge of Welsh or Scottish Gaelic can also be used to fulfil the language requirement. Home Office guidance states that if anyone wishes to take the test in these languages (for instance Gaelic‐speaking Canadians or Welsh‐speaking Argentinians) arrangements will be made for them to do so. In practice, very few, if any, take the test in a language other than English.

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Response to geardaddy (Reply #20)

Tue Dec 18, 2012, 07:35 PM

21. That's interesting.

My interest in this isn't esoteric.

As an "Englishman" who is half-Welsh and an eighth Scots and an eighth Irish, I am annoyed at successive London governments' tokenistic attitudes to the other official languages (and histories and cultures) in the UK.

The Skin

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Response to non sociopath skin (Reply #21)

Wed Dec 19, 2012, 10:38 AM

22. Very good.

Apparently, there was one request to take the test in Welsh, but the person never did it. Nevertheless, the option is there.

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