Aspirational middle class families sending their children to be educated in the UK has fuelled a steady increase in Chinese students, with number at fee-paying schools almost doubling in five years according to ISC data. French remains the most popular modern language A-level followed by Spanish, but both have seen a fall in entries compared to last year by eight and four per cent respectively.Russian has also increased in popularity since last year by 3.4 per cent, from 1,122 to 1,160. Arabic, however, has declined by 5.4 per cent, from 782 entries last year to 740 this year. We’re seeing German just moving into extinction really. It is in severe declineSuzanne O’Farrell, Association of School and College Leaders Mr Lenon, a former headmaster at Harrow School, said the rise in Chinese A-levels is partly driven by private schools, many of which have invested in the subject in recent years. “It is not the case that large number of states schools are now teaching Chinese A-levels. They are not,” he said. He said many of the entries will be Chinese native speakers, adding that independent schools have attracted “large numbers” of Chinese pupils in recent years. Suzanne O’Farrell, curriculum and assessment specialist at the Association of School and College Leaders (ASCL), said: “We’re seeing German just moving into extinction really. It is in severe decline.”Barnaby Lenon, chair of the Independent Schools Council (ISC), said that whereas pupils used to be told “It will really help your career if you learn German” this is no longer the case.“In the 1960s, 70s and even the 80s, Germany was the economic powerhouse of Europe,” he told The Daily Telegraph.“Pupils were strongly encouraged to study German because of the importance of the German economy. Although it is still strong, that argument has faded, and China has emerged in the last 25 years as the fastest growing economy in the world.” Chinese A-level has overtaken German for the first time, as it becomes the UK’s third most popular language.This year 3,334 students took Chinese A-level, compared to 3,058 taking German. While entries for Chinese have increased by 8.6 per cent since last year, German entries have declined by 16.5 per cent.Derek Richardson, the senior responsible officer at Pearson, said Chinese has “bucked the trend” of the fall in popularity of modern languages. “In languages we are seeing some significant decreases in entries for the main modern languages: French, German and Spanish,” he said –– ADVERTISEMENT ––”But what we are also seeing is an increase in entries across some of the other languages that people study.“What this means is Chinese…is now more popular than German. So maybe young people are beginning to think about what languages will be useful to them in the future.” Pupils at Withington Girls’ School Manchester celebrate their A-level resultsCredit:Howard Walker / Alamy Live News Earlier this month, the Department for Education (DfE) launched a network of language “hubs” to boost take-up of modern languages, amid concern about the sliding drastic drop in entries for both GCSEs and A-levels. Mark Herbert, director of schools and skills at the British Council, welcomed the rise in Chinese A-level entries. “Against this overall downward trend, the increasing popularity of Chinese proves that our young people can be enthused to study languages,” he said. “Our research shows that Mandarin will be one of the most important languages for the UK’s future prosperity and global standing – but we mustn’t neglect Spanish, French and German which will still be vital post-Brexit.”Nick Gibb, the schools minister, said: “It has never been more important for young people to learn a foreign language than now.“An outward looking global nation needs a new generation of young people comfortable with the language and culture of our overseas trading partners.” Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings.
City HallThe Commission of Inquiry (CoI) into the management of City Hall, today, heard that over $70M is unaccounted for in the $500M city restoration funds.This is according to the finance records from the Audit Office of Guyana which was presented by the Audit Manager, Dhanraj Persaud at the Critchlow Labour College on Woolford Avenue.As he delved into the matter, Persaud showed that Central Government through the Communities Ministry had supplied funds for city restoration projects at a sum of $300M in 2015 and in 2016, another $200M was injected into the initiative, which totaled to $500M.However, when checks were made into the evidences presented for the expenditure of these projects, $70.489M was unaccounted for.Dhanraj sought to point out that there were no financial records for the council for 2006 to 2011 and some were provided for 2013 to 2015.As it relates to the presentation of the records, the report hasn’t been completed as yet because the council failed to produce the documents in the correct format.When engaged via a letter, the Town Clerk did not respond within the 30-day period and had later asked for a one month extension to fix the documents.To date, there has been no response. Chapter 28:01 of the Municipal and District Councils Act states that failure to supply these records for auditing purposes is an offence.So far, it was heard that the Town Clerk also rented a section of the Route 44 bus park and leased lands to a shipping company which was not owned by the council but rather by the National Industrial and Commercial Investments Limited (NICIL).The inquiry is expected to conclude on October 31, where the necessary recommendations will be submitted after all evidence is presented before the Commission. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedPlan complete for $903M restoration of City HallJuly 9, 2018In “Business”Plans for over $400M City Hall restoration underwayMay 24, 2018In “Business”City Hall seeking to handle 60% of its solid waste management with Govt subvention- KingJanuary 5, 2018In “latest news”