MORE pupils in England are set to be given Latin lessons, after Education Secretary Gavin Williamson announced a £4m scheme to teach the ancient language in more state secondary schools.
Mr Williamson said part of the reason is that “there should be no difference in what pupils learn at state schools and independent schools.” The Government says that Latin is taught in 49% of private schools, compared to 2.7% of state schools.
“We know Latin has a reputation as an elitist subject which is only reserved for the privileged few,” Mr Williamson said. “But the subject can bring so many benefits to young people, so I want to put an end to that divide.”
The scheme is set to copy the Mandarin Excellence Programme, which was launched to prepare pupils for a world in which China is increasingly important. TV historian Professor Mary Beard
said: “I am absolutely delighted that the Department for Education will be supporting Latin in schools and helping more pupils to have the challenge and fun of learning about the ancient world.”
The opposite view was summed up by Nazir Afzal, the chair of a further education college, who tweeted: “We will continue to give students the skills-based learning they need for the 21st century, not for the 1st.”
But enough about what the adults think; how about you? Would you want to learn Latin? Or would you prefer to learn Mandarin or a modern European language? Vote in our poll and leave us a comment!