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The schools reversing the languages decline

The TES has identified the Harris Federation academies as being among a ‘minority of schools that significantly increased languages uptake despite national decline’.

They spoke to Harris Academy Bermondsey Principal, Rebecca lles-Smith, as well as the Harris Federation’s lead MFL consultant, David Shanks.

Rebecca lles-Smith commented that being in a deprived area should be no barrier to teaching languages and that it is “a serious imposition to pupils’ future opportunities” to deny them the opportunity. At Harris Academy Bermondsey
60 percent of pupils are eligible for free school meals – last year 100 percent of pupils in Year 11 chose to sit at least one language at GCSE.

Across the wider Federation, the TES reports that “Harris secondary academies have, on average, doubled the number of pupils taking a language GCSE over the past seven years.”

The article goes on to say that “Mandarin Chinese is another success story at the Harris Federation: there are now 3,500 pupils studying it across all 44 primary and secondary academies, compared with 480 in 2015.”

You can read the article here and in the TES magazine.



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