Todays news in the Daily Mail
More than one million children speak English as a second language, official figures reveal.
A record one in six pupils at primary schools and one in eight at secondary don’t speak English at home.
The number of non-native speakers topped one million for the first time, rising from 957,490 last year.
with a heading
English a second language to one million pupils as record one in six children don’t speak it at home by Laura Clark
The article goes on to suggest that it costs an extra 600% to educate these children, yet they are overtaking ordinary children in exam results. There will be many negative comments surrounding this I think but we should look at whether there is any correlation between the added cost, individual support and their achievement because there is no doubt that they are closing the gap. If so should we be looking at our class sizes? Just posing the question what do you think?
The figures were released as part of an official census of schools taken in January. At some schools, dozens of different languages are spoken.
A separate analysis released earlier this year showed how children who speak English as their first language are now a minority in more than 1,600 English schools.
The number of schools where fewer than half of children are native speakers has virtually doubled in 15 years. Pupils with English as their main language now form a minority in one in 13 schools – up from one in 25 in 1997
The cost of educating a child with English as an additional language has been estimated at up to £30,000-a-year, against around £5,000-a-year for other pupils.
Punjabi is the most commonly spoken language among pupils who do not have English as a first language. Other widely spoken languages are Urdu, Bengali, Gujarati, Somali, Polish, Arabic, Portuguese, Turkish and Tamil.
There are also sizable proportions of pupils who speak Shqip from Albania and Kosovo, Igbo from parts of Nigeria, Luganda from Uganda, Sinhala from Sri Lanka and Amharic from Ethiopia.
GCSE results published earlier this year showed how pupils whose first language is not English are closing the attainment gap with English-speaking youngsters. And they were also more likely to make fast progress in the three Rs between the ages of 11 and 16.
A Department for Education spokesman said: ‘English language skills are vitally important to ensure all individuals and communities can fully integrate into society. We provide schools with funding and teaching materials to help them support children with English as an additional language right through to secondary education.’
The council areas with the largest number of schools where English-at-home speakers are a minority include Bradford with 59, Manchester with 35, Birmingham with 117, Leicester with 40, Luton with 22 and Slough with 19.
In London, the highest numbers are in Newham with 79, Tower Hamlets with 70, Brent with 57, and Ealing with 55.
There are also minority English-speaking schools in towns and cities including Brighton, Milton Keynes, Southampton, Scunthorpe, Skipton and Windsor and Maidenhead.
GCSE results published earlier this year showed how pupils whose first language is not English are closing the attainment gap with English-speaking youngsters.
They are actually outperforming first-language speakers on one measure for the first time.
Some 80.8 per cent of second-language English speakers achieved five good GCSEs or equivalent