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A, the, or plural

hirashin

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Hello, native English speakers,
Which could be used?
(a) Most Japanese high school students go to a cram school to prepare for college entrance exams.
(b) Most Japanese high school students go to the cram school to prepare for college entrance exams.
(c) Most Japanese high school students go to cram schools to prepare for college entrance exams.

I think (a) and (c) would be all right. But how about (b)? Does it sound strange?

Hirashin
 

Majestic

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I agree with you. 1a and 1c are fine.
1b sounds as though there were only one cram school in all of Japan, and all students must go to the one and only cram school.
 

hirashin

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Thank you for your ongoing help, Majestic. I appreciate it.
 

johnnyG

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I agree with the above, but I disagree with the the thesis of the examples. Both of our kids got into very good 国立大学 without ever going to "cram" schools.
 

hirashin

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Ah...OK.Thanks, jonnyG.
Are your kids bilingual, if I may ask?
 

johnnyG

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Ah...OK.Thanks, jonnyG.
Are your kids bilingual, if I may ask?
Yeah, pretty much. Both are over TOEIC 900, but the younger one is better (just finishing a year abroad in Canada).

I read a lot to them, and was there to talk and play together (one of the perks of my job). Also, while Japanese, my wife is an English teacher, so she has been the model of bilingualism in our house.
 
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