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This conference examined next steps for modern foreign language (MFL) provision in England’s schools.
It was an opportunity to discuss the introduction of new measures by government, which aim to increase the number of students studying a MFL at GCSE while boosting the quality of MFL lessons in secondary and primary schools, including the establishment of a Language Hub programme over the next three years, with the selection of the first 19 schools to run the new network of Hubs.
Delegates looked ahead to the implementation of new GCSEs in secondary schools with first teaching in 2024, including the ways in which changes to the current offer and content of the new GCSEs will affect both how and what pupils will learn, as well as the impact of reform and curriculum design, and how best to prepare schools and staff.
We are pleased to have been able to include keynote sessions with: Leilah Tott, Assistant Director, Department for Education; Sir Ian Bauckham, Chief Executive Officer and Director, Tenax Schools Trust; and Chair, Modern Foreign Languages Pedagogy Review (2016), Teaching Schools Council; and Bernadette Holmes, Director, National Consortium for Languages Education.
Sessions in the agenda included:
- policy: key priorities for modern foreign language provision in England
- Language Hubs: implementation in England - their future role in improving learning opportunities and student outcomes
- primary and secondary: teaching and the MFL offer - curriculum design - quality and standards of language lessons - raising attainment for disadvantaged groups - transition between key stages
- new GCSEs: priorities for implementation from 2024 - preparation and delivery - adjusting to the new assessment criteria - raising uptake - progression to further study and employment
- the future: key considerations moving forward for modern foreign languages - best practice - international exchange
The conference was an opportunity for stakeholders to consider the issues alongside key policy officials who attended from the CMA; DfE; and Ofqual.