New York, NY (CNN) — Japan’s national education ministry announced Thursday that teachers can now be certified for English as a second language as part of a wider overhaul to the nation’s public education system.
The government’s education minister announced that the Ministry of Education and Training is preparing to expand the countrys certification of teachers with the help of English as the second language, or ESL, in a bid to increase the number of teachers in the country.
Under the plan, the ministry will expand the list of schools where teachers can be certified in English as ESL, as well as provide additional support for those who wish to pursue the profession.
The ministry will also provide support for the training of teachers.
“As a result of this plan, it is also possible to have an ESL-certified teacher in any school, regardless of whether the school is an elementary or secondary school, elementary or middle school, or a secondary school,” said the ministry’s director-general, Toshihiko Noda.
The ministry is also working to implement a new system for determining the qualification of teachers for the job market, as part a bid for boosting the nations education sector.
The plan was first announced last month.
The new system will allow a teacher to earn their qualification by participating in the National Teacher Qualification Program (NTQP).
Teachers will be required to complete two years of high school and to have a high school diploma, which is necessary for their teaching certification.
Under Noda’s plan, all public schools in the nation will be able to participate in the NTQP.
Teachers will also be able register for the NTPP, which will take place in 2021.
“It is important to make sure that we can train more teachers to improve our education system, and that we ensure that the government is not taking advantage of the shortage of teachers by making these reforms,” Noda said.
The Ministry of Justice and Education is also planning to set up a training program for teachers, including teaching English as second language.
The move follows the announcement of a pilot program earlier this year to provide a training for more than 1,000 public school teachers, but there has been no progress in the training process.
Last month, the Japan Association of Teachers (JAT) announced a plan to establish a training institute for teachers in 2019.