The BBC reports on the King Car English Village:

The “village” is actually attached to one of the county’s elementary schools.

Ordinary classrooms have been transformed to look like an airport waiting room and customs area - complete with the fuselage of a real plane donated by a Taiwanese airline company.

There are other themed rooms including a hotel; a bank; a pharmacy, general store; restaurant and coffee bar; science and cookery rooms and a dance studio.

It’s the idea of a non-profit group organization, the King Car Education Foundation, which has spent $1m on the project, which it operates in a joint venture with the local county authority.

Left out in the media reports — over and over again — is the fact that the King Car “volunteers” are missionaries (here’s the blog of one) from fruitcake right-wing missionary denominations. No doubt Scott Sommers will have a post up soon on the legal and educational aspects of the village.

King Car is the group bringing in right-wing Christian missionaries who illegally prosyletize while on the job all over Taiwan, generally in rural areas. The foundation does quite a bit of work with the Ministry of Education. King Car Education foundation can be had here. Scott Sommers has pointed out repeatedly on his blog that these missionaries are here teaching illegally (here too), while I’ve commented on their nutty beliefs as well.[UPDATE: Scott just comments to point out that King Car missionaries teaching English has become legal, but only for them].

Scott Sommers has written quite eloquently on the topic of these villages, which have no proven pedogogical effect.

The BCC also repeats the problematic statement that Taiwan came in “17th out of 20 Asian countries” — as Stephen Krashen noted in a recent letter in the Taipei Times, the statement is meaningless because there is no significant statistical difference between the schools in the middle of the rankings. One could use those same numbers and argue, since the proportion of test takers is much higher in Taiwan than in most countries taking the exam, that Taiwan’s English education is excellent. But it is easier to write about failure than success.

* as I noted before, a good example is this fellow here, whose blog proudly says: 我 是帥哥! I’m the Handsome Guy! My name is Samuel (包帝聞) and I’m a working as an English teacher on the island of Kinmen, Taiwan, doing my best to spread the good news of Christ – among people whom he patronizes:

Their gods are confined to images and carved wood. They aren’t so much gods as they are warriors, each with their own battle to fight. The wind god isn’t really a god: he simply fights to control the wind. But sometimes he looses. How horrible to have not a God but a warrior, one who might or might not win. What happens when your god looses? Then you are stuck. Aren’t you glad our God is all powerful?)

UPDATE: Scott has a post up.