Schools win £53m to halt foreign languages slide
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Schools win £53m to halt foreign languages slide

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  A £53m package for teaching foreign languages in schools, aimed at halting the decline in take-up rates at GCSE, has been unveiled.

The funding will ensure every seven-year-old has the chance to learn a language by the end of the decade, according to the Schools minister Jim Knight. The Independent has revealed a slump of more than 30 per cent in the number of children taking the subject at GCSE at more than 1,000 schools. In addition, 46 secondary schools in England did not have a single child studying foreign languages. Yesterday, Mr Knight defended the Government's decision to make the subject voluntary after the age of 14. He said: "We know 'one-size-fits-all' compulsory French and German GCSE study simply does not motivate pupils, a view taken strongly by teachers, employers and trade unions. By continuing to invest in better-trained teachers and more innovative resources, we will generate enthusiasm and confidence for studying languages in secondary school and beyond, far more effective than simple compulsion."

The investment has been praised by national body the Centre for Information on Language Teaching.

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                                                                          Published: 20 December 2007    News by Independent
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