The Future of Modern Foreign Languages in Secondary Schools

Confirmed to speak:

  • Lord Harrison (Chair), Member, APPG on Modern Languages
  • Ian Bauckham, Headteacher, Bennett Memorial Diocesan School & Chair, Modern Foreign Languages Pedagogy Review, Teaching Schools Council
  • Natalie Campbell, Subject Manager for Spanish, Trinity Catholic School & ALL Secondary Language Teacher of the Year 2016
  • Suzanne O'Farrell, Curriculum and Assessment Specialist, ASCL
  • Dr Anna Lise Gordon, Academic Director, Secondary and Postgraduate Provision, St Mary’s University & President, Association for Language Learning
  • Dr Rachel Hawkes, Director of International Education and Research, CAM Academy Trust


Modern foreign languages (MFL) in schools are on the verge of a crisis. According to new data from the Teaching Schools Council less than half of secondary schools pupils take a MFL GCSE with just one third achieving a good grade. There is also a chronic shortage of MFL teachers. Government has failed to meet MFL teacher recruitment targets in any of the last four years, and in 2015 one in ten teaching posts went unfilled. On top of this, a recent study by Schools Week revealed that another 3,500 languages teachers may be needed to meet demand driven by the EBacc.

With recent changes also being made to MFL GCSE assessments, join Westminster Briefing for this timely event to learn how you can deliver much-needed improvements in the standards of language teaching and find out the best ways to increase pupils’ interest and success.

Key Issues to be Addressed Include:

  • Increasing MFL uptake at secondary level - the challenge
  • The crisis of MFL beyond GCSE
  • Impact of the classification of MFL as an EBacc subject on schools and teachers
  • Impact of reforms to assessment of MFL at GCSE and A Level
  • Take up and inclusion in secondary schools
  • The supply of MFL teachers
  • Effective lesson frequency in the retention of knowledge
  • Consistent curriculum transition from primary to secondary level
  • A joined up approach to language teaching

The Event:

The morning session will highlight the key issues facing MFL in secondary schools and identify strategies that can be implemented in the current climate to improve the consistency and effectiveness of MFL teaching.

The afternoon session will build on this further, focusing on what practical steps your schools can take to improve MFL provision in order to provide outstanding learning opportunities for all pupils.

Who Should Attend?

You will join a range of school and education stakeholders including, but not limited to: secondary head teachers, sixth form colleges, senior and middle leaders, ITT providers, relevant governors, and anyone interested or involved in the future of MFL in schools

For registration enquiries please contact: |
0207 593 5657

To discuss event sponsorship, speaking opportunities and agenda content, please email:

Tuesday 25th April 2017

11.00am - 3.30pm (including networking lunch)

Public Sector | 1 Place: £245 | 2+ Places: £195 each
Private Sector | 1 Place: £295 | 2+ Places: £245 each
Above prices exclude VAT

Background Quote

““Modern foreign languages in our schools are in a very fragile state. We heard many examples during our enquiry of schools restricting their languages curriculum in recent years, and these decisions were more often than not driven by small or falling pupil numbers. Without concerted action, languages in our schools are at risk, and may become confined to certain types of school and certain sections of the pupil population.”
Ian Bauckham, Chair, Review of Modern Foreign Language pedagogy in KS3 & 4

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