The David Cameron government in Britain on Friday reversed an earlier decision by the education officials to withdraw Punjabi and some other languages at the secondary and higher-secondary levels from 2017, and said instruction in the languages would continue.
Punjabi, Gujarati, Bengali, and Urdu (all Indian languages) among others will continue at the GCSE and A levels (equivalent to India’s secondary and higher secondary levels). Official sources said the announcement by education secretary Nicky Morgan marked a significant step in efforts to extend opportunity to young people and equip them with the skills they needed in an increasingly global economy.
Morgan said: “One of Britain’s strengths is its rich, multicultural nature, and ensuring young people have the opportunity to study a wide range of languages is integral to that. Learning a foreign language opens up a whole world of opportunity and ensures that our young people will be able to compete on a global scale.”
Sources said that from 2014 to March 2016, the government had provided £1.8 million (more than `17 crore) to train teachers to teach the new languages curriculum in schools.