Foreign teachers to be full-timers

Foreign nationals will be hired as full-time instructors at Akita Prefecture elementary schools starting next April, when English lessons become part of the official curriculum, its education board said.

Native English speakers or those who have studied in English-speaking countries for a certain period can apply regardless of nationality or whether they hold a teacher’s license. All applicants must have a good command of Japanese, officials said.

The move is a first across Japan, the officials said. Assistant language teachers have so far been hired only on a part-time basis.