The Regional English Language Office (RELO) was established in 2006 in the Public Affairs Section of the U.S. Embassy in Lima, Peru to support public diplomacy outreach through English language teaching and training in Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Ecuador, Paraguay, Peru and Uruguay. It cooperates with Ministries of Education, Binational Centers, professional teachers’ associations, Fulbright, Peace Corps, public and private universities and other higher education institutes, among other partners, in order to build a stronger understanding between the peoples of the Andean region and Southern Cone of Latin America and the United States. The Office works through the Public Affairs Sections of the seven Andean region-based U.S. Embassies to create and implement projects and programs related to English language teaching by providing training opportunities, expertise and materials. The Lima Office is one of 25 such offices around the world and coordinated by the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, Office of English Language Programs.
To support U.S. Embassies’ Public Affairs Sections within the Andes and Southern Cone region by:
- Promoting the learning and teaching of American English around the world as an integral part of the Department of State’s efforts to foster mutual understanding between the people of the United States and the people of other countries.
- Increasing the English language capacity of audiences overseas in order to deepen and enrich their engagement with American counterparts and build lasting bridges between cultures.
- Increasing access to the many exchange programs administered by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and other academic and professional exchange opportunities in the United States, particularly for potential grantees from underrepresented groups, including women and minorities.
- Advancing the Department of State’s economic statecraft and foreign assistance goals by expanding access to the local and global job markets, particularly among youth.
The English Language Fellow Program places highly qualified U.S. ELT professionals in Ministries of Education, universities and other host institutions throughout the Andean region for one to two academic years. The region’s Fellows work with their hosts as well as with the local and regional ELT community to create and implement courses, materials, curriculums and training programs that build stronger connections between the host and U.S. culture.
The English Language Specialist Program is a U.S. Department of State (DOS) public diplomacy initiative in which experts in English language education lead intensive English language projects that are designed by Public Affairs Sections of U.S. Embassies around the world to respond to local needs.
The English Access Microscholarship Program provides two years of after-school English to academically-gifted, economically-disadvantaged teenagers who are in their last three years of high school. The program emphasizes fluency in English and couples language study with strong cross-cultural, civic, information technology and leadership building components. All Access sites in the Andean Region are strongly encouraged to conduct an “Open Classroom” policy, allowing pre-arranged classroom observations and sharing best practices with area English teachers.
The Online Professional English Network (OPEN) offers eight weeks of ELT online graduate level classes to Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL), through universities in the US. Topics include Teaching English to Younger Learners, Critical and Creative Thinking, Assessment, and Using Technology in the Classroom.
The American English Webinar Series aims at improving the quality of English language teaching. These interactive online seminars introduce foreign English language teaching (ELT) educators to learner-centered teaching methods. Participants directly interact with the U.S. English language teaching expert presenters and their ELT colleagues worldwide. Each American English Webinar Series consists of six 60-minute webinars offered every other week (on Wednesdays at 8:00 a.m. & 1:00 p.m. ET). Series are conducted live and require real time interaction. Advance registration is required. Due to a limited number of places per country, we strongly encourage “viewing parties” in which groups of colleagues participate together.
The Regional English Language Office coordinates the distribution of U.S. government-produced ELT and American studies books, maps, videos and CDs. Its flagship publication, the quarterly English Teaching Forum, is a response to a need for theoretical and practical solutions and suggestions in the ELT field. New and experienced authors are encouraged to contribute their articles. The Office also collaborates with local authors to create region-specific material that addresses key ELT and cross-cultural issues.
The RELO Andes Webinars consist of monthly online seminars focused on methodology and English language teaching topics aimed at supporting English teacher throughout the region. No registration is required.