Thursday, 13 May 2010

1 in 7 children do not speak English as their first language

Nearly one in seven school children do not speak English as their first language, official figures released today show.

Including state primary, secondary and special schools in England, 14 per cent of pupils speak another language at home, according to the Department for Education.

The data reveals a picture of a changing Britain and shows the challenge faced by many schools where they have to integrate children who lack a command of English.

The figures are higher in primaries than in secondaries - with one in six (16 per cent) youngsters aged 11 and under speaking English as a second language - 518,020 pupils overall.

In secondaries that figure is around one in eight (11.6 per cent), totalling 378,210 pupils.

At special schools, researchers found 9,380 pupils (10.9 per cent) do not speak English as a first language.

The overall figure for all schools is 905,610 pupils with English as a second language.

Today's statistics give a snapshot of the makeup of England's state schools in January this year.

Full story HERE

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