Over the past six years the number of children in primary schools learning foreign languages has doubled, according to a report in The Times. So it appears that the UK government might just achieve its aim that all primary school pupils are learning a language by 2010.
The most popular language by far is French, which is taught by 89% of primary schools. German is taught by just 9% of schools, and Italian, Chinese, Japanese or Urdu are by fewer than 3%. Over 4,000 primary school teachers with a language specialism have been trained, and thousands more will be trained by 2010, at least that’s what the government hopes.
A review of languages in schools carried out last year by Lord Dearing recommended that languages be made compulsory at primary level. This hasn’t been implemented yet.
Do you think the study of foreign languages should be compulsory in schools? Is it compulsory in your country? If not, do plenty of people study languages anyway?