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English Speaking Board (International) Ltd. is expanding its reach in Asia.

The UK-based national awarding body will be working closely with The Culture Bridge (TCB) to provide ESB examinations to learners in Beijing, Shanghai and Nanjing.

The Culture Bridge anticipates more than 500 learners in China will benefit from sitting ESB exams over the next year and this will grow to 5,000 candidates a year after three years.

ESB Chief Executive, Tina Renshaw, said: “We are very excited about TCB’s planned delivery of ESB qualifications in China. We already offer qualifications in Hong Kong, Singapore and Kuala Lumpar but our agreement with TCB will expand our reach in Asia and bring our products and services to an even wider audience. Our ethos, whether in the UK or internationally, is to recognise and encourage the potential of all and I look forward to hearing all the many success stories from China.”

TCB director, Jon Fearon-Jones, added: “We will initially be working with our local partners in Beijing, Shanghai and Nanjing but this will be expanded to include Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Hangzhou, Ningbo, Chengdu and Macao S.A.R. The target age for our first year will be 12-18 year-olds expanding into primary schools in our second year.  We chose ESB as we are looking to provide the best possible experiences for our learners. We look forward to seeing the highest possible quality of results in our ESB assessments in China.”

Jon Fearon-Jones has extensive experience of introducing British Education to the Chinese market and its learners. He was an English specialist on the British Council’s first British Studies project in China in the early 1990s and helped to introduce British ‘A’ levels to China in the early 2000s. 

Said Jon, “As our name implies, TCB is committed to acting as a bridge between cultures. Encouraging and facilitating communication between people is our primary objective. We will now be busy recruiting teachers from the UK, ideally with prior experience of teaching ESB qualifications.”


About English Speaking Board (International) Ltd.
English Speaking Board (International) Ltd. is a national awarding body with a mission to promote clear, effective communication at all levels by providing high quality products and services domestically and internationally, recognising and encouraging the potential of all. Founded in 1953, ESB offers English speech and language qualifications in the UK and internationally. ESB’s ethos is to stretch the most able and support the least confident.


About The Culture Bridge
The Culture Bridge CIC (TCB) is a social enterprise company, approved by the UK’s community interest company regulator, and is a provider of educational and cultural services and programmes. Based in Cambridge, TCB acts as an organiser for the delivery and assessment of internationally recognised qualifications. At TCB, we firmly believe that there are more similarities than differences between people living in very different parts of the world. We aim to be a bridge for people and institutions by enabling and encouraging mutual trust, collaboration and the optimisation of benefits for all. As a CIC, The Culture Bridge is committed to re-investing at least two thirds of its profits in furthering its social mission.

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