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Kids with mother tongue English a minority in British schools

United Kingdom,Education,Immigration/Law/Rights, Fri, 23 Mar 2012 IANS

London, March 23 (IANS) Children whose mother tongue is English are now in the minority at more than 1,600 schools across England, and Urdu, Bengali, Gujarati and Tamil are among the most common languages.

 

The new figures show that close to one million children who now attend schools in England do not have English as their first language at home.

 

And the amount of schools with a majority of pupils who do not class English at their home language is steadily increasing by one a week, the Daily Mail reported Wednesday.

 

There are 97 schools where children with English as their first language are in such a minority that they make up less than one in twenty pupils.

 

The statistics released by the Department of Education shows that in 1997, when Tony Blair (former prime minister) first came to power, there were 866 schools in England where more than 50 percent of the pupils had English as a second language.

 

Last year, in just 14 years, that figure had nearly doubled to 1,638 schools.

 

Now there are 1,363 primary schools, 224 secondary schools and 51 special schools where more than half the pupils come from a non-English speaking background.

 

After that the most popular languages were Urdu, Bengali, Gujarati, Somali, Polish, Arabic, Portuguese, Turkish and Tamil.

 


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