EU referendum: Vote remain to protect Esol, campaigners say

Body for English language teachers has said that it 'deplores the anti-immigrant rhetoric' of the Brexit campaign

Will Martin

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The National Association for Teaching English and Community Languages to Adults (NATECLA) has claimed that remaining in the European Union is "the only way to ensure access to affordable Esol" (English for speakers of other languages) classes for students.

A statement published by NATECLA warned that Brexit would result in many EU students being charged higher fees for language courses, and could also mean funding cuts for the FE sector.

The association also said that it "deplores" the "anti-immigration rhetoric" used by pro-Brexit campaigners in the build up to the EU referendum on 23 June.

'Valuable funding will be lost'

In the statement, it said: “NATECLA deplores the anti-immigrant rhetoric of the EU referendum campaign. NATECLA believes that remaining in the EU is the only way to ensure access to affordable Esol classes for students. By leaving, many EU students who do not have 'leave to remain' are likely to be charged at overseas student rates. In addition, valuable EU funding, such as European Integration funding, will be lost and important projects such as the Esol Nexus website may no longer be possible.”

In January David Cameron announced a new programme to fund Esol courses for Muslim women who do not have access to English language learning services.

The move came months after an estimated £45 million in funding for Esol courses was withdrawn. At the time, the Association of Colleges said 47 colleges and approximately 17,000 learners would be affected.

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Will Martin picture

Will Martin

Will is a junior reporter at TES

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