HC Deb 19 December 1989 vol 164 cc212-3W
67. Mr. Andrew MacKay

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Science if he will make a statement on the level of modern languages taught in schools.

Mrs. Rumbold

The Government are concerned to increase both the number of pupils continuing to study a modern foreign language until age 16 and beyond and their standards of language competence. That is why the national curriculum includes a modern foreign language as a foundation subject at secondary level to be studied by all pupils between the ages of 11 and 16. The national curriculum working group on modern foreign languages is expected to recommend, by July 1990, attainment targets and programmes of study for modern foreign languages based on current best practice, in order to raise standards and to provide a stimulating and worthwhile challenge to pupils of all abilities during their period of compulsory secondary schooling.