A poor command of English among some kindergarten teachers may cause a government education fund to cut funding for a pilot language project that teaches English through story-telling rather than rote-learning. The project, launched three years ago at 43 kindergartens, has seen some children learning four times as much English vocabulary as through the conventional method. About 150 kindergarten teachers have been trained to teach English without using Chinese. This involves reading stories entirely in English with the use of textbooks. But the project might be unable to continue when the new school year starts in September, said the director of the Council of Early Childhood Education and Services, Sansan Ching Teh-chi. The fund's vetting committee is questioning some teachers' English abilities. A decision will be made this month. The council runs the pilot scheme and is urging the vetting committee to extend the project to cover 87 kindergartens from September. Ms Ching said: 'There's no dispute that the kindergarten teachers' English proficiency is not adequate. 'But at least they have been upgrading themselves under the project. Our pilot project is set out to change the teaching method at all kindergartens across Hong Kong. 'We can see that the children are actually enjoying the lessons and teachers are more confident now since they can deliver a lesson in the whole 15 minutes - all in English.' In the past, most kindergartens taught toddlers to memorise English vocabulary. This method involved repeating the alphabet. Under the $2.5 million pilot project, two sets of story books have been designed by special advisers hired by the fund, catering to the local situation. Children are taught to spell words through reading stories without having to memorise the words by rote. Democratic Party legislator and Professional Teachers' Union President, Cheung Man-kwong, said the fund should continue even if some teachers had a poor command of English. 'It is unreasonable if the fund is cut, and the children will suffer most,' Mr Cheung said.