There have been a number of articles about the growth of ESL teaching in the Philippines like this, but some of what they are stating don't strike me as right. The Philippines does have potential and in the drive to reduce costs, it is clearly a place to watch out for.
It is right that learning in the Philippines is cheaper than in many countries. I would agree with the BBC article about the difficulties of coping with the pollution in Manila- I have picked up a nasty lung disease since living here, but I have not come across any serious degree of corruption. That doesn't mean it isn't there - it is - but you can live here without being affected much by it. It may take ages to get a phone connection, though.
There are many native speakers here, but these are mostly found in the upper levels of society, and connected people with MBAs from American universities, etc, are not queuing up to teach ESL. People who speak Taglish often do not have the clear American accent described- they have their own stress, and use their own forms and vocabulary. I have no idea how the claim to be the third largest English-speaking nation is made, and won't challenge it, though I can't help wondering whether there are really more native speakers here than in India.
I have heard anecdotal reports from Japanese learners who switched to teachers from the Philippines that they did so because their teachers had a better understanding of Asian culture, which may be a very good sales pitch. Price may also be an advantage. This article seems fair, but the idea given in some places that there are dozens and dozens of millions of cheap native speakers here waiting for your call or to teach is an exaggeration.
Categories: Asian Blog