The End of ALTs

Forget about the popularity of eikaiwa online, it's iPods for everyone!

An elementary school in Wakayama has recently had an open English-language lesson using iPod Touch, with students watching video images of a native speaker on the small display of the digital handset.

Japan: 

Japanese Police Getting Slightly More Proactive

Police in Japan are remarkably reactive and don't spend much time or energy working on crime prevention. Besides stopping the occasional cyclist and verifying ownership of said bicycle, offering directions or taking a spin on their scooters, they remain very low-key, but they are a constant presence. The officers are largely relegated to their small community police boxes that are centrally located close to train stations all over the country. The policing approach has been one that is based on police officers maintaining a visible presence.

Consumer Affairs Agency Shuts Down Fortress Japan

It took the Consumer Affairs Agency long enough. From the Yomiuri Shimbun:

The Consumer Affairs Agency and the Tokyo metropolitan government on Thursday ordered a Tokyo-based English-language conversation school chain operator to suspend operations due to its coercive method of selling its services to university students and others.

Eikaiwa: 

Tweet Tweet; Hatoyama Gone Digital

In a bid to capture the attention of a cell phone obsessed nation and in order to appeal to younger voters, Japanese Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama has stolen from the political play book of successful American politicians including Barak Obama. Hatoyama's office recently launched his blog and a Twitter account to connect the Prime Minister with the public.

GEOS: Sorry, Have Some Free Lessons

As scheduled, GEOS announced the measures it will take for its students affected by the closure of the schools in Australia: free English lessons.

Japan: 

Interview on My TEFL Journey Part II

Part II of my interview on My TEFL Journey.

Where do you see the English teaching industry in Japan heading?

Eikaiwa: 
Japan: 

That Sucking Sound

Ahead of GEOS's Wednesday scheduled announcement of the measures they will take in response to the closure of its schools in Australia, will Tsuneo Kusunoki address the giant sucking sound that everybody is hearing?

Adelaide Now:

GEOS to Explain Things on Wednesday

GEOS has posted a brief note on its website [PDF] saying that it will explain what it will do in response to the school closures on Wednesday the 10th, following meetings in Australia:

この度はオーストラリア法人の各学校の閉鎖に関しまして、お騒がせ しましたことを改めてお詫び致します。

今回の件が現地法人で起こった事であり、弊社が商標権を許諾してい たとはいえ、GEOSブランドを信用してご入学頂き、今回の出来事にあ われました皆様に対して、現地での全ての説明会が終了した後、 2月10日(水)、弊社ホームページにて対応を発表致します。

Japan: 

Yokozuna Asashoryu- Undisputed Champion

The most talked about, despised and loved Sumo Wrestler of our era has opted for retirement. The Mongolian Powerhouse that has dominated Japan's National Sport since being promoted to the rank of Yokozuna in 2003 has given in to pressure to bow out of the sport as his latest controversy surfaces.

Japan Today Series on Eikaiwa

Japan Today has started a regular series on the state of the language school industry, in particular eikaiwa, written by Dean Rogers, president and CEO of Dean Morgan Co Ltd, the school that sounds like an investment company.

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