Partnership aims to boost languages

6th May 2011 at 01:00
A new partnership is aiming to boost the study of modern foreign languages in Wales's schools

Education charity CILT Cymru, the national centre for languages, has severed ties to its parent body and joined Cardiff-based exam board WJEC.

The two bodies, which each provide resources and continuing professional development opportunities for language teachers, will work closely together to promote MFL.

Both have expressed concern over the decline in language learning and the number of students entering exams in languages.

Last year, entries for A-level MFL subjects fell by 17 per cent in Wales; GCSE entries fell by 3.5 per cent.

Since it was formed in 2002, CILT Cymru has helped the Assembly government formulate its national MFL strategy Making Languages Count. Although most of its funding comes from the government, cash for additional projects was provided by CILT in England, which is facing an uncertain future.

CILT Cymru director Ceri James said that with no guarantee of this extra funding, he was forced to look at other options.

After securing a strategic partnership with WJEC, the charity's 13 staff have moved to the exam board's Cardiff offices. Mr James said he is "very optimistic".

Derec Stockley, WJEC's director of examinations, welcomed the partnership. He said: "WJEC looks forward to a close working relationship with CILT Cymru, who are successfully raising the profile of language learning as an invaluable skill for work specifically and life generally."

Original headline: Partnership aims to boost study of languages

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