English becomes the minority language in 1,300 Brit schoolsDecember 17th, 2007 - 4:39 pm ICT by admin
London, Dec 17 (ANI): Kids in more than 1,300 schools who have English as their first language are in the minority, according to official figures.
A report, which obtained data from the Department for Children, Schools and Families illustrating the impact of high levels of immigration on the education system, revealed that in 112 of the 3,343 secondary schools, children without English as a first language make up 51 to 70 per cent of all pupils
The figures showed that in a total of 1,338 primary and secondary schools, more than one in 20 of all schools in England, children with English as their first language were in the minority.
In 600 of these schools, less than a third of pupils spoke English as their first language.
Teachers leaders said that coping with large numbers of foreign children risked undermining the quality of teaching given to all pupils.
Philip Parkin, the general secretary of the Professional Association of Teachers, said rising levels of immigration and a lack of multi-lingual teaching staff were “providing serious challenges” for schools trying to maintain standards.
Parkin said that dealing with non-English- speaking children makes it much harder to deliver the curriculum.
“Schools that are in that position need considerable support in order to give those children help with English and help with our curriculum.
“The Government needs to be looking at funding the employment of teachers or teaching assistants, in addition to the staff they have, who are bilingual or multilingual, Telegraph quoted him, as saying.
Mick Brookes, the union’s general secretary said that the latest figures proved the case for putting additional resources into the areas dealing with large numbers of non-English speakers.
“There are children who cannot speak the language,” he said.
“Others are refugees who may have witnessed some horrible things. These children may not just need support to speak English, but often they require counselling to talk them through the trauma they have witnessed, he added. (ANI)
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