Chartered Institute
of Linguists

UK Government to invest £14.9m in language lessons for schools

CIOL welcomes the UK Government’s new commitment to invest £14.9m to help deliver high-quality teaching of languages in schools, with a programme to promote the benefits of learning a language, support teachers and encourage more students to study French, German and Spanish.

“Today’s news that thousands more students will benefit from high quality language teaching as part of a programme to boost the number of pupils taking languages like French, German and Spanish at GCSE and A level is very positive” said John Worne, CEO of the Chartered Institute of Linguists.

The government has announced that leading schools in language teaching will form a new Centre of Excellence, comprised of up to 25 schools, which will work with other schools to improve standards of language teaching across the country. The programme will be backed by £14.9 million over the next three years, which will also aim to raise interest in studying German.

CIOL agrees that languages are a key part of a broad and balanced curriculum and that evidence suggests learning a language has strong economic benefits, including improving international trade. The British Council has identified that Spanish, Mandarin, French, Arabic and German are the top five priority languages to improve the UK’s skills, security and influence in the world, and these are the same five languages the Chartered Institute of Linguists has made available in our new degree-level Certificate in Translation (CertTrans), launched this year and successfully taken by candidates for the first time last week to enable more UK linguists to become language professionals.

Schools Minister Nick Gibb said: “In an increasingly globalised economy, it has never been more important for our pupils to be taught modern foreign languages. There is mounting evidence which shows the economic benefits of learning an additional language. This programme will give teachers the rigorous training and knowledge they need to support pupils in learning some of the most prominent global languages such as French, German and Spanish.”

Read the full Government press release here.