BCC says extra language investment for schools is not enough

The British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) has warned that greater investment on language learning in schools will not stop young people leaving school without the necessary language skills for business.

A recent BCC survey found that 80% of English exporters cannot competently conduct business dealings overseas in even one foreign language.

BCC president, Bill Midgley, said the organisation was keen to gain assurances from the government that it will focus on the 11-  to 14-age group, as well as at primary level.

“It is essential to ensure that the benefits of language learning at primary level are not wasted and young people continue in their enthusiasm for language studies,” he said.

“We are concerned that in the interim, the government’s move will not stop the decline in young people leaving school without language qualifications. This decline has been partly due to the government’s decision to scrap the requirement for youngsters to take language GCSEs.”

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