Baroness Coussins Portrait

Baroness Coussins

Crossbench - Life peer

Became Member: 23rd March 2007


1 APPG membership (as of 30 May 2024)
Modern Languages
4 Former APPG memberships
British Council, Jazz Appreciation, Peru, United Nations
Committee of Selection (Lords)
28th Jan 2021 - 31st Jan 2023
Liaison Committee (Lords)
19th Jan 2022 - 31st Jan 2023
International Relations and Defence Committee
25th May 2016 - 1st Jul 2019
EU External Affairs Sub-Committee
12th Jun 2015 - 12th May 2016
EU Sub Committee C - External Affairs
21st May 2013 - 30th Mar 2015
Information Committee (Lords)
14th Nov 2007 - 1st May 2012


Division Voting information

During the current Parliament, Baroness Coussins has voted in 255 divisions, and never against the majority of their Party.
View All Baroness Coussins Division Votes

Debates during the 2019 Parliament

Speeches made during Parliamentary debates are recorded in Hansard. For ease of browsing we have grouped debates into individual, departmental and legislative categories.

Sparring Partners
Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon (Conservative)
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
(41 debate interactions)
Baroness Berridge (Conservative)
(21 debate interactions)
Baroness Williams of Trafford (Conservative)
Captain of the Honourable Corps of Gentlemen-at-Arms (HM Household) (Chief Whip, House of Lords)
(16 debate interactions)
View All Sparring Partners
Department Debates
Home Office
(30 debate contributions)
Department for International Trade
(19 debate contributions)
Department for Education
(16 debate contributions)
View All Department Debates
Legislation Debates
Victims and Prisoners Act 2024
(2,795 words contributed)
Financial Services Bill 2019-21
(2,574 words contributed)
Nationality and Borders Act 2022
(1,426 words contributed)
View All Legislation Debates
View all Baroness Coussins's debates

Lords initiatives

These initiatives were driven by Baroness Coussins, and are more likely to reflect personal policy preferences.


Baroness Coussins has not introduced any legislation before Parliament

Baroness Coussins has not co-sponsored any Bills in the current parliamentary sitting


Latest 50 Written Questions

(View all written questions)
Written Questions can be tabled by MPs and Lords to request specific information information on the work, policy and activities of a Government Department
1 Other Department Questions
3rd Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government, since the publication of their report Quarterly Report on progress to address COVID-19 health inequalities on 22 October 2020, what (1) actions have been taken, and (2) progress has been made, in relation to implementing Recommendation 12 of that report, regarding public health advice in languages other than English.

The Government has made significant progress in implementing Recommendation 12 and addressing COVID-19 health inequalities. This includes regularly translating public health communications into other languages and formats, including Easy Read, and working with local authorities to translate assets according to local need. Translated materials are routinely shared in editable formats so they can be useful by as wide an audience as possible.

The Minister for Equalities will shortly be publishing her second quarterly progress report to the Prime Minister and the Health Secretary, which will include a more detailed update against this and the other recommendations from her report of 22 October.

19th Jun 2023
To ask His Majesty's Government what progress they have made in negotiations towards a Free Trade Agreement between the UK and Mexico.

Negotiations between the UK and Mexico have been positive so far, with a clear mutual intention to pursue a Free Trade Agreement which can complement and build on our new trade arrangements as members of the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership. We have held three rounds of negotiations, with the latest taking place in May.

We look forward to concluding negotiations at the earliest opportunity. However, we want to make sure any new trade deal adds value to the UK economy and meets our trade policy objectives. We are prepared to take the time necessary to deliver that.

Lord Johnson of Lainston
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
3rd Jun 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what funding they have provided to climate change initiatives in the region of Chocó in Colombia; and which projects they are supporting in that region.

Her Majesty's Government provides official development assistance (ODA) to climate change initiatives in the region of Chocó in Colombia through two programmes delivered through the UK’s International Climate Finance (ICF), UK Partnering for Accelerated Climate Transitions (UK PACT) and Partnerships for Forests (P4F). These projects aim to tackle deforestation in Colombia by fostering sustainable alternative livelihoods and the development of the bioeconomy in order to reduce CO2 emissions.

UK PACT is providing over £700,000 grant funding to a ‘Community-Based Sustainable Tourism Enhancing Project’ which supports activity in 38 municipalities in Colombia including the Choco region. The project aims to build the capacity for commercialising sustainable tourism opportunities, in collaboration with the local communities, by using enhanced technological approach and designing a novel scientific-based tourism business model.

P4F is providing over £1.5 million in grant funding to two projects which have activities in the Choco region: ‘Colombia Pacific Acai’ and ‘Sustainable Heart of Palm’. P4F supports these innovative projects to grow and secure new private investment by improving the business models and building the capabilities of local actors across the value chain.

In addition, the Newton-Caldas Fund, through UKRI and the British Council, has funded activity related to biodiversity in the Chocó region as part of the Colombia Bio programme. Colombia Bio aims to protect the unique biodiversity of Colombia through improving our understanding of ecosystems, their response to environmental- including climate change, and support sustainable and socially inclusive development. Activities include UK funding of over £300,000 to a project improving data on the Atrato River.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
3rd Jun 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what support they plan to provide, or have provided, to the implementation of the Environmental Action Plan for Choco developed in response to the Colombian Court’s ruling judgment T-622.

Her Majesty's Government has not directly provided nor currently plans to provide support to the implementation of the Environmental Action Plan for Chocó developed in response to the Colombian Court’s ruling judgement T-622.

Officials from BEIS’ International Climate Finance (ICF) team met with some of the appointed ‘Guardians of the Atratos’ in late 2019, to understand the context of the Colombian court’s ruling judgement T-6222 and determine the broader impact on programme implementation in Colombia.

Through the FCO’s Conflict Stability and Security Fund (CSSF), HMG supports the implementation of the peace accords between the Government of Colombia and the FARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia), including in Chocó Department. Included in this support is assistance to help deliver Chocó’s rural development plan (PDET), which was designed in accord with the local population and specifically mentions the T-6222 ruling judgement.

Additionally, UK Research and Innovation, via the HMG ODA Newton-Caldas Fund, has funded a project in which an international consortium of researchers is working to support the communities along the Atrato River through improving scientific data on the state of the river. This has included building capacity amongst riverine communities enabling them to carry out environmental monitoring activity, and making data accessible to communities, advocacy groups, and policy makers.

Lord Callanan
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
20th Nov 2023
To ask His Majesty's Government how many teachers of modern foreign languages (MFL) have been recruited by maintained (1) secondary schools, and (2) primary schools, as a result of the inclusion of MFL teachers on the Shortage Occupation List announced on 4 March 2021.

The department does not hold data on the number of Modern Foreign Languages (MFL) secondary level teachers recruited as a result of the inclusion of MFL on the Shortage Occupation List (SOL). Primary level MFL teachers are not included on the SOL.

Baroness Barran
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
13th Jul 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what is the regional breakdown of successful applications to the Turing Scheme from (1) schools, (2) further education, and (3) universities.

The success rate of schools applying to participate in the Turing Scheme over the two years the scheme has operated are:

  • 2021/22 academic year: 131 schools applied, 114 were successful, 87% success rate, which equated to 5,139 individual student placements.
  • 2022/23 academic year: 157 schools applied, 70 were successful, 45% success rate, which equated to 4,721 individual student placements.

The Turing Scheme is demand-led and competitive. There has been significant interest in the Turing Scheme this year, with many more applications than last year. All successful applications received funding, but may not have received their full requested budget due to high demand.

Successful applications are required to score at least 50 marks out of 100, and at least 50% in each of four qualitative criteria which are:

  • Global Britain
  • Levelling up
  • Positive impact and value for money
  • Project planning

All applications were independently assessed by sector experts, who ensured all successful projects met the quality standards required. 70 applications failed on the levelling up criterion. Others had less well-developed projects. This could be due to some of those applicants having less experience in designing projects of this type and securing funding for them. 67% of applicants for the 2022/23 academic year were new applicants, and 71% of applicants that failed were new applicants.

The Turing Scheme has a strong focus on supporting levelling up by providing opportunities for pupils from disadvantaged backgrounds. In the 2021/22 academic year, 48% of 41,000 approved placements for all sectors, which includes schools, further education/vocational education and training, (FE/VET) and higher education (HE), were for participants from disadvantaged backgrounds. 52% of 38,000 approved placements for all sectors in the 2022/23 academic year are for participants from disadvantaged backgrounds. The Turing Scheme uses a range of measures based on sector standards across the UK to define what we mean by participants from disadvantaged backgrounds. These are listed in full on the Turing Scheme website: https://www.turing-scheme.org.uk/about/widening-access/.

The tables below show the percentage of placements allocated for participants from disadvantaged backgrounds, by sector, for the 2021/22 and 2022/23 academic years.

Table 1: Placements by sector for the 2021/22 academic year

Sector

HE

FE/VET

Schools

Totals

Total no. of participants

28,997

6,888

5,139

41,024

No. of participants from disadvantaged backgrounds

13,817

3,843

2,053

19,713

% of participants from disadvantaged backgrounds

47.6%

55.8%

39.9%

48.1%

Table 2: Placements by sector for the 2022/23 academic year

Sector

HE

FE/VET

Schools

Totals

Total no. of participants

23,986

9,605

4,721

38,312

No. of participants from disadvantaged backgrounds

12,356

5,554

2,022

19,932

% of participants from disadvantaged backgrounds

52%

58%

43%

52%

A full regional breakdown of schools, FE/VET, and HE is provided on the Turing Scheme website: https://www.turing-scheme.org.uk/funding-opportunities/funding-results-2022-23/. Data is subject to change until grant agreements are in place.

Baroness Barran
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
13th Jul 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the success rate of applications to the Turing Scheme by disadvantaged pupils and students from each (1) sector of the education system, and (2) region.

The success rate of schools applying to participate in the Turing Scheme over the two years the scheme has operated are:

  • 2021/22 academic year: 131 schools applied, 114 were successful, 87% success rate, which equated to 5,139 individual student placements.
  • 2022/23 academic year: 157 schools applied, 70 were successful, 45% success rate, which equated to 4,721 individual student placements.

The Turing Scheme is demand-led and competitive. There has been significant interest in the Turing Scheme this year, with many more applications than last year. All successful applications received funding, but may not have received their full requested budget due to high demand.

Successful applications are required to score at least 50 marks out of 100, and at least 50% in each of four qualitative criteria which are:

  • Global Britain
  • Levelling up
  • Positive impact and value for money
  • Project planning

All applications were independently assessed by sector experts, who ensured all successful projects met the quality standards required. 70 applications failed on the levelling up criterion. Others had less well-developed projects. This could be due to some of those applicants having less experience in designing projects of this type and securing funding for them. 67% of applicants for the 2022/23 academic year were new applicants, and 71% of applicants that failed were new applicants.

The Turing Scheme has a strong focus on supporting levelling up by providing opportunities for pupils from disadvantaged backgrounds. In the 2021/22 academic year, 48% of 41,000 approved placements for all sectors, which includes schools, further education/vocational education and training, (FE/VET) and higher education (HE), were for participants from disadvantaged backgrounds. 52% of 38,000 approved placements for all sectors in the 2022/23 academic year are for participants from disadvantaged backgrounds. The Turing Scheme uses a range of measures based on sector standards across the UK to define what we mean by participants from disadvantaged backgrounds. These are listed in full on the Turing Scheme website: https://www.turing-scheme.org.uk/about/widening-access/.

The tables below show the percentage of placements allocated for participants from disadvantaged backgrounds, by sector, for the 2021/22 and 2022/23 academic years.

Table 1: Placements by sector for the 2021/22 academic year

Sector

HE

FE/VET

Schools

Totals

Total no. of participants

28,997

6,888

5,139

41,024

No. of participants from disadvantaged backgrounds

13,817

3,843

2,053

19,713

% of participants from disadvantaged backgrounds

47.6%

55.8%

39.9%

48.1%

Table 2: Placements by sector for the 2022/23 academic year

Sector

HE

FE/VET

Schools

Totals

Total no. of participants

23,986

9,605

4,721

38,312

No. of participants from disadvantaged backgrounds

12,356

5,554

2,022

19,932

% of participants from disadvantaged backgrounds

52%

58%

43%

52%

A full regional breakdown of schools, FE/VET, and HE is provided on the Turing Scheme website: https://www.turing-scheme.org.uk/funding-opportunities/funding-results-2022-23/. Data is subject to change until grant agreements are in place.

Baroness Barran
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
13th Jul 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the success rate of schools applying to participate in the Turing Scheme.

The success rate of schools applying to participate in the Turing Scheme over the two years the scheme has operated are:

  • 2021/22 academic year: 131 schools applied, 114 were successful, 87% success rate, which equated to 5,139 individual student placements.
  • 2022/23 academic year: 157 schools applied, 70 were successful, 45% success rate, which equated to 4,721 individual student placements.

The Turing Scheme is demand-led and competitive. There has been significant interest in the Turing Scheme this year, with many more applications than last year. All successful applications received funding, but may not have received their full requested budget due to high demand.

Successful applications are required to score at least 50 marks out of 100, and at least 50% in each of four qualitative criteria which are:

  • Global Britain
  • Levelling up
  • Positive impact and value for money
  • Project planning

All applications were independently assessed by sector experts, who ensured all successful projects met the quality standards required. 70 applications failed on the levelling up criterion. Others had less well-developed projects. This could be due to some of those applicants having less experience in designing projects of this type and securing funding for them. 67% of applicants for the 2022/23 academic year were new applicants, and 71% of applicants that failed were new applicants.

The Turing Scheme has a strong focus on supporting levelling up by providing opportunities for pupils from disadvantaged backgrounds. In the 2021/22 academic year, 48% of 41,000 approved placements for all sectors, which includes schools, further education/vocational education and training, (FE/VET) and higher education (HE), were for participants from disadvantaged backgrounds. 52% of 38,000 approved placements for all sectors in the 2022/23 academic year are for participants from disadvantaged backgrounds. The Turing Scheme uses a range of measures based on sector standards across the UK to define what we mean by participants from disadvantaged backgrounds. These are listed in full on the Turing Scheme website: https://www.turing-scheme.org.uk/about/widening-access/.

The tables below show the percentage of placements allocated for participants from disadvantaged backgrounds, by sector, for the 2021/22 and 2022/23 academic years.

Table 1: Placements by sector for the 2021/22 academic year

Sector

HE

FE/VET

Schools

Totals

Total no. of participants

28,997

6,888

5,139

41,024

No. of participants from disadvantaged backgrounds

13,817

3,843

2,053

19,713

% of participants from disadvantaged backgrounds

47.6%

55.8%

39.9%

48.1%

Table 2: Placements by sector for the 2022/23 academic year

Sector

HE

FE/VET

Schools

Totals

Total no. of participants

23,986

9,605

4,721

38,312

No. of participants from disadvantaged backgrounds

12,356

5,554

2,022

19,932

% of participants from disadvantaged backgrounds

52%

58%

43%

52%

A full regional breakdown of schools, FE/VET, and HE is provided on the Turing Scheme website: https://www.turing-scheme.org.uk/funding-opportunities/funding-results-2022-23/. Data is subject to change until grant agreements are in place.

Baroness Barran
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
18th May 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many classroom language assistants were placed in maintained schools in each of the last five years; and what assessment they have made, if any, of how this compares to the numbers in independent schools.

The department continues to welcome talented individuals to teach or train to teach in the UK, including through the Language Assistants programme. UK schools can continue to benefit from the presence of a Modern Language Assistant (MLA) by applying through the official programme managed by the British Council on behalf of the department and devolved administrations.

In the 2022/23 academic year, the department has seen a 29% increase in requests to host MLAs in the UK, from 506 to 653 MLAs supporting the teaching of languages in schools of all types across the country. The MLAs will come from 14 partner destinations worldwide.

The British Council and the department recognise the importance and impact MLAs can have in both maintained and independent schools, and therefore encourage and welcome applications from all types of educational institutions. The British Council has introduced more flexibility to make the programme more affordable and appealing to schools, which includes flexible periods of appointment and offering schools in the UK the option to apply for shorter posts of under 6 months which reduces the overall cost.

A UK-wide breakdown of the number of British Council MLAs in maintained and independent schools over the last five years is set out below:

Academic Year

Maintained

Independent

Total

2022/23

446

207

653

2021/22

371

135

506

2020/21

453

169

622

2019/20

517

175

692

2018/19

648

204

852

(Data provided by British Council, correct as of 23 May 2022)

Baroness Barran
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
23rd Mar 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether an equality impact assessment was made before delaying the grant to CLEx about the impact on black, Asian, and minority ethnic language learners' access to national accreditation at (a) GCSE, and (b) A Level.

The government understands the importance of all languages for the UK’s economic and diplomatic interests, as well as the many personal and social benefits learning another language can bring. This is why the study of languages is a statutory part of the national curriculum for pupils in key stages 2 and 3.

French, Spanish and German remain the most popular languages for pupils to study at school. The government provides resources and professional development for teachers in these languages through the Modern Foreign Languages (MFL) Hub programme, run by the National Centre for Excellence in Language Pedagogy.

An increasing number of pupils now choose to study Mandarin, and the government supports many of these pupils through the £12 million Mandarin Excellence Programme (MEP). The MEP is the department’s flagship programme for the study of Mandarin, with the aim of providing a pipeline of fluent Mandarin speakers to meet the UK’s future economic and diplomatic needs. We are currently considering what steps might be taken to provide greater support for the study of other languages, including Arabic and Urdu.

Schools are free to offer any language which they feel best meets the needs of their pupils and the wider community. GCSEs and A levels are available in Arabic, Mandarin, Russian, Turkish and Urdu. All these languages count towards the English Baccalaureate (EBacc) school performance measure, ensuring that most young people study a core of academic subjects at GCSE. The provision of these qualifications is ultimately a decision for awarding organisations. However, the department is supportive of ongoing opportunities to study these languages, signifying Britain's role as an outward-facing, vibrant country, enriched by the diversity of its people.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and unique circumstances in 2021, the government made a grant available to support exam centres to meet costs associated with the additional demands of assessment for private candidates, including those taking community and heritage languages. The claims window opened on 29 November 2021 and closed on 10 January 2022. The department subsequently carried out quality assurance checks on the evidence provided by centres to ensure the accuracy of claims and payment allocations. The assurance checks that needed to be carried out always meant that payments would be made to centres at the end of the 2021/22 financial year. Centres that supplied the evidence required in the claims were due to be paid on 31 March 2022. This included a payment to the Community Language Examination Centre.

The grant was only available for teacher assessed grades produced in summer 2021, not to any other assessment period, due to the unique circumstances in 2021. It has helped centres to meet costs and will not have led to any exam entry reductions.

Baroness Barran
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
23rd Mar 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the reduction in the numbers of pupils taking (1) GCSE, and (2) A Level, examinations in (a) community, or (b) heritage, languages not taught in mainstream state schools as a result of the delayed grant from the Department for Education to the Community Language Examination Centre (CLEx).

The government understands the importance of all languages for the UK’s economic and diplomatic interests, as well as the many personal and social benefits learning another language can bring. This is why the study of languages is a statutory part of the national curriculum for pupils in key stages 2 and 3.

French, Spanish and German remain the most popular languages for pupils to study at school. The government provides resources and professional development for teachers in these languages through the Modern Foreign Languages (MFL) Hub programme, run by the National Centre for Excellence in Language Pedagogy.

An increasing number of pupils now choose to study Mandarin, and the government supports many of these pupils through the £12 million Mandarin Excellence Programme (MEP). The MEP is the department’s flagship programme for the study of Mandarin, with the aim of providing a pipeline of fluent Mandarin speakers to meet the UK’s future economic and diplomatic needs. We are currently considering what steps might be taken to provide greater support for the study of other languages, including Arabic and Urdu.

Schools are free to offer any language which they feel best meets the needs of their pupils and the wider community. GCSEs and A levels are available in Arabic, Mandarin, Russian, Turkish and Urdu. All these languages count towards the English Baccalaureate (EBacc) school performance measure, ensuring that most young people study a core of academic subjects at GCSE. The provision of these qualifications is ultimately a decision for awarding organisations. However, the department is supportive of ongoing opportunities to study these languages, signifying Britain's role as an outward-facing, vibrant country, enriched by the diversity of its people.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and unique circumstances in 2021, the government made a grant available to support exam centres to meet costs associated with the additional demands of assessment for private candidates, including those taking community and heritage languages. The claims window opened on 29 November 2021 and closed on 10 January 2022. The department subsequently carried out quality assurance checks on the evidence provided by centres to ensure the accuracy of claims and payment allocations. The assurance checks that needed to be carried out always meant that payments would be made to centres at the end of the 2021/22 financial year. Centres that supplied the evidence required in the claims were due to be paid on 31 March 2022. This included a payment to the Community Language Examination Centre.

The grant was only available for teacher assessed grades produced in summer 2021, not to any other assessment period, due to the unique circumstances in 2021. It has helped centres to meet costs and will not have led to any exam entry reductions.

Baroness Barran
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
31st Jan 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the remarks by Baroness Barran on 27 January (HL Deb col 434), of the (1) 41,000 placements under the Turing Scheme, and (2) 16,500 placements under Erasmus+ in 2020–21, how many were for (a) an academic year, (b) an academic term, and (c) six weeks or fewer.

Data on Erasmus+ is produced by the European Union. Mobility breakdowns across countries and activities can be found in EU annual reports and factsheets here: https://erasmus-plus.ec.europa.eu/resources-and-tools/statistics-and-factsheets and https://ec.europa.eu/assets/eac/factsheets/factsheet-uk-2020_en.html. According to this data, in academic year 2019/20, 16,596 students from UK higher education institutions participated in Erasmus+.

Under the Turing Scheme, providers successfully applied for funding to cover over 41,000 individual placements overseas across the academic year 2020/2021. This included over 28,000 in higher education, over 6,000 in further education and vocational education and training and over 5,000 in schools. Further information on eligibility is available in the programme guide here: https://www.turing-scheme.org.uk/news/the-programme-guide-is-now-available/.

As the 41,000 placements in academic year 2020/21 relates to planned activity, and the type and duration of mobilities will vary under the Turing and Erasmus+ Schemes, an immediate direct comparison of the figures cannot be made. A fuller evaluation is being planned to accurately compare figures from both programmes.

Current eligible durations for activity are as follows:

  • Higher education: 4 weeks to 12 months.
  • Further education and vocational education and training: 2 weeks to 12 months. Minimum durations can be 5 days for those with educational needs and/or disabilities and 1-10 days for participants attending skills competitions abroad.
  • Schools: short term placements can last between 3 days to 2 months and long-term placements can last between 2 months and 6 months.

To address the ongoing impact of COVID-19, universities, colleges and schools can adjust plans for activities taking place this academic year if needed. The Turing Scheme is offering flexibility to change the duration, destination and timing of placements. Turing Scheme projects, however, cannot be extended past 31 August 2022 in accordance with government spending requirements.

Due to the fact that many providers are changing plans for activities because of COVID-19, this will have an impact on the actual placements that take place. More data on durations will be published once the 2021/22 academic year concludes.

From successful applications for the first year of the Turing Scheme, over 150 destinations across the globe were included in plans for placements overseas. Over 60% of activity was planned to take place in countries outside of the EU. A detailed breakdown of each destination, including those outside the EU, can be found on the funding results page on the Turing Scheme website here: https://www.turing-scheme.org.uk/project-community/funding-results/.

All destinations successfully applied for in higher education can be found here: https://www.turing-scheme.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/Proposed-Destinations-of-Funded-Higher-Education-Turing-Scheme-Participants-in-2021.pdf.

All destinations successfully applied for in vocational education and training and further education can be found here: https://www.turing-scheme.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/Proposed-Destinations-of-Funded-Further-Education-and-Vocational-Education-and-Training-Turing-Scheme-Participants-in-2021.pdf.

All destinations successfully applied for in Schools can be found here: https://www.turing-scheme.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/Proposed-Destinations-of-Funded-Turing-Scheme-Schools-Participants-in-2021.pdf.

Baroness Barran
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
31st Jan 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the remarks by Baroness Barran on 27 January (HL Deb col 434), which countries outside the EU accounted for the 60 per cent of applications for the Turing Scheme in 2020–21.

Data on Erasmus+ is produced by the European Union. Mobility breakdowns across countries and activities can be found in EU annual reports and factsheets here: https://erasmus-plus.ec.europa.eu/resources-and-tools/statistics-and-factsheets and https://ec.europa.eu/assets/eac/factsheets/factsheet-uk-2020_en.html. According to this data, in academic year 2019/20, 16,596 students from UK higher education institutions participated in Erasmus+.

Under the Turing Scheme, providers successfully applied for funding to cover over 41,000 individual placements overseas across the academic year 2020/2021. This included over 28,000 in higher education, over 6,000 in further education and vocational education and training and over 5,000 in schools. Further information on eligibility is available in the programme guide here: https://www.turing-scheme.org.uk/news/the-programme-guide-is-now-available/.

As the 41,000 placements in academic year 2020/21 relates to planned activity, and the type and duration of mobilities will vary under the Turing and Erasmus+ Schemes, an immediate direct comparison of the figures cannot be made. A fuller evaluation is being planned to accurately compare figures from both programmes.

Current eligible durations for activity are as follows:

  • Higher education: 4 weeks to 12 months.
  • Further education and vocational education and training: 2 weeks to 12 months. Minimum durations can be 5 days for those with educational needs and/or disabilities and 1-10 days for participants attending skills competitions abroad.
  • Schools: short term placements can last between 3 days to 2 months and long-term placements can last between 2 months and 6 months.

To address the ongoing impact of COVID-19, universities, colleges and schools can adjust plans for activities taking place this academic year if needed. The Turing Scheme is offering flexibility to change the duration, destination and timing of placements. Turing Scheme projects, however, cannot be extended past 31 August 2022 in accordance with government spending requirements.

Due to the fact that many providers are changing plans for activities because of COVID-19, this will have an impact on the actual placements that take place. More data on durations will be published once the 2021/22 academic year concludes.

From successful applications for the first year of the Turing Scheme, over 150 destinations across the globe were included in plans for placements overseas. Over 60% of activity was planned to take place in countries outside of the EU. A detailed breakdown of each destination, including those outside the EU, can be found on the funding results page on the Turing Scheme website here: https://www.turing-scheme.org.uk/project-community/funding-results/.

All destinations successfully applied for in higher education can be found here: https://www.turing-scheme.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/Proposed-Destinations-of-Funded-Higher-Education-Turing-Scheme-Participants-in-2021.pdf.

All destinations successfully applied for in vocational education and training and further education can be found here: https://www.turing-scheme.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/Proposed-Destinations-of-Funded-Further-Education-and-Vocational-Education-and-Training-Turing-Scheme-Participants-in-2021.pdf.

All destinations successfully applied for in Schools can be found here: https://www.turing-scheme.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/Proposed-Destinations-of-Funded-Turing-Scheme-Schools-Participants-in-2021.pdf.

Baroness Barran
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
31st Jan 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the remarks by Baroness Barran on 27 January (HL Deb col 434), what was the breakdown for (1) the 16,500 applicants in 2019–20 for the Erasmus+ scheme, (2) the 41,000 applicants in 2020–21 for the Turing Scheme, between (a) undergraduates, (b) graduates, (c) school students, (d) apprentices, (e) youth workers, and (f) staff from educational institutions; and in each category for each scheme, how many students were disabled.

Data on Erasmus+ is produced by the European Union. Mobility breakdowns across countries and activities can be found in EU annual reports and factsheets here: https://erasmus-plus.ec.europa.eu/resources-and-tools/statistics-and-factsheets and https://ec.europa.eu/assets/eac/factsheets/factsheet-uk-2020_en.html. According to this data, in academic year 2019/20, 16,596 students from UK higher education institutions participated in Erasmus+.

Under the Turing Scheme, providers successfully applied for funding to cover over 41,000 individual placements overseas across the academic year 2020/2021. This included over 28,000 in higher education, over 6,000 in further education and vocational education and training and over 5,000 in schools. Further information on eligibility is available in the programme guide here: https://www.turing-scheme.org.uk/news/the-programme-guide-is-now-available/.

As the 41,000 placements in academic year 2020/21 relates to planned activity, and the type and duration of mobilities will vary under the Turing and Erasmus+ Schemes, an immediate direct comparison of the figures cannot be made. A fuller evaluation is being planned to accurately compare figures from both programmes.

Current eligible durations for activity are as follows:

  • Higher education: 4 weeks to 12 months.
  • Further education and vocational education and training: 2 weeks to 12 months. Minimum durations can be 5 days for those with educational needs and/or disabilities and 1-10 days for participants attending skills competitions abroad.
  • Schools: short term placements can last between 3 days to 2 months and long-term placements can last between 2 months and 6 months.

To address the ongoing impact of COVID-19, universities, colleges and schools can adjust plans for activities taking place this academic year if needed. The Turing Scheme is offering flexibility to change the duration, destination and timing of placements. Turing Scheme projects, however, cannot be extended past 31 August 2022 in accordance with government spending requirements.

Due to the fact that many providers are changing plans for activities because of COVID-19, this will have an impact on the actual placements that take place. More data on durations will be published once the 2021/22 academic year concludes.

From successful applications for the first year of the Turing Scheme, over 150 destinations across the globe were included in plans for placements overseas. Over 60% of activity was planned to take place in countries outside of the EU. A detailed breakdown of each destination, including those outside the EU, can be found on the funding results page on the Turing Scheme website here: https://www.turing-scheme.org.uk/project-community/funding-results/.

All destinations successfully applied for in higher education can be found here: https://www.turing-scheme.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/Proposed-Destinations-of-Funded-Higher-Education-Turing-Scheme-Participants-in-2021.pdf.

All destinations successfully applied for in vocational education and training and further education can be found here: https://www.turing-scheme.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/Proposed-Destinations-of-Funded-Further-Education-and-Vocational-Education-and-Training-Turing-Scheme-Participants-in-2021.pdf.

All destinations successfully applied for in Schools can be found here: https://www.turing-scheme.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/Proposed-Destinations-of-Funded-Turing-Scheme-Schools-Participants-in-2021.pdf.

Baroness Barran
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
25th Nov 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether claims for the Private Candidate Support Grant may be made retrospectively.

The online claims service for the Private Candidate Support Grant was launched on 29 November 2021. The claims form and accompanying guidance can be found here: https://form.education.gov.uk/service/exam-funding.

Centres can make retrospective claims of £200 per entry to meet the costs associated with the additional demands of assessment for private candidates this year.

Baroness Barran
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
25th Nov 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government when they plan to publish details of the Private Candidate Support Grant for approved examination centres, including when the online claims service will go live.

The online claims service for the Private Candidate Support Grant was launched on 29 November 2021. The claims form and accompanying guidance can be found here: https://form.education.gov.uk/service/exam-funding.

Centres can make retrospective claims of £200 per entry to meet the costs associated with the additional demands of assessment for private candidates this year.

Baroness Barran
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
1st Nov 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many primary schools in England are not teaching a foreign language at Key Stage 2.

All maintained schools are required to follow the national curriculum, which includes teaching any modern or ancient foreign language at key stage 2. Academies are expected to teach a curriculum which is similar in breadth and ambition as the national curriculum.

The department does not collect data on all schools on the teaching of individual subjects in primary schools, and this includes languages. Similarly, Ofsted does not inspect each individual subject in its inspections but would look at whether schools are teaching a broad, balanced, and well-sequenced curriculum.

Any concerns that a maintained school may not be complying with the requirement to teach languages at key stage 2 should, in the first instance, be raised via the school’s complaints procedure. If the complaint is not resolved, then the issue can be escalated to the Department for Education’s school complaints unit.

Baroness Barran
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
1st Nov 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to monitor the delivery of the national curriculum requirement that a foreign language be taught at Key Stage 2.

All maintained schools are required to follow the national curriculum, which includes teaching any modern or ancient foreign language at key stage 2. Academies are expected to teach a curriculum which is similar in breadth and ambition as the national curriculum.

The department does not collect data on all schools on the teaching of individual subjects in primary schools, and this includes languages. Similarly, Ofsted does not inspect each individual subject in its inspections but would look at whether schools are teaching a broad, balanced, and well-sequenced curriculum.

Any concerns that a maintained school may not be complying with the requirement to teach languages at key stage 2 should, in the first instance, be raised via the school’s complaints procedure. If the complaint is not resolved, then the issue can be escalated to the Department for Education’s school complaints unit.

Baroness Barran
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
11th Oct 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the impact on (1) language learning in UK schools, and (2) the teaching of English in schools overseas, of the removal from the tiered visa regime for unpaid student internships.

We continue to welcome talented individuals from overseas to teach or train to teach in the UK, including through the Language Assistants Programme (LAP). The programme is owned by the Department for Education and delivered by the British Council.

Over 150 UK institutions hosted language assistants last year. Annual evaluation reported that language assistants made a significant impact on attainment and learning outcomes for pupils, including improved exam grades, improved cultural awareness, improved standards in listening and speaking, and improved confidence in using the language.

In addition, as part of the LAP, around 2,500 UK students are able travel to 15 destinations to support the teaching of English, through paid teaching placements around the world. UK students rated their experience positively, with improved teaching and language skills.

The Government Authorised Exchange (GAE) scheme also provides individuals with opportunities to come to the UK for a short time for work experience, training, to complete an Overseas Government Language Programme, and for research or a fellowship. Students are also permitted to undertake a work placement as part of a course on the student route, provided the work placement is an integrated and assessed part of the course of study. The Appendix GAE lists all the schemes available and more information is available here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/immigration-rules/immigration-rules-appendix-government-authorised-exchange-schemes.

Baroness Barran
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
11th Oct 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the value to language learning in secondary schools of foreign language classroom assistants.

We continue to welcome talented individuals from overseas to teach or train to teach in the UK, including through the Language Assistants Programme (LAP). The programme is owned by the Department for Education and delivered by the British Council.

Over 150 UK institutions hosted language assistants last year. Annual evaluation reported that language assistants made a significant impact on attainment and learning outcomes for pupils, including improved exam grades, improved cultural awareness, improved standards in listening and speaking, and improved confidence in using the language.

In addition, as part of the LAP, around 2,500 UK students are able travel to 15 destinations to support the teaching of English, through paid teaching placements around the world. UK students rated their experience positively, with improved teaching and language skills.

The Government Authorised Exchange (GAE) scheme also provides individuals with opportunities to come to the UK for a short time for work experience, training, to complete an Overseas Government Language Programme, and for research or a fellowship. Students are also permitted to undertake a work placement as part of a course on the student route, provided the work placement is an integrated and assessed part of the course of study. The Appendix GAE lists all the schemes available and more information is available here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/immigration-rules/immigration-rules-appendix-government-authorised-exchange-schemes.

Baroness Barran
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
11th Oct 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether the submission to the consultation on reforms to modern language GCSEs from the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Modern Languages will be recorded as one response, or reflect its endorsement by almost 100 organisations and 1,000 individuals.

The government intends to publish its response to the consultation before the end of this year.

The response of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Modern Language (APPGML) to the government’s consultation on the revised GCSE modern foreign language subject content review will be recorded as one response. Individuals and organisations are always advised to respond directly to government consultations, rather than to be signatories of independent campaigns.

In addition, we know that a number of organisations and individuals who endorsed the APPGML statement also responded to the government consultation separately. By doing so, the government is able to consider responses systematically, including the responses of individuals and organisations to the specific questions in the consultation.

Baroness Barran
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
11th Oct 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government when they expect to publish the responses to the consultation on proposed reforms to modern language GCSEs.

The government intends to publish its response to the consultation before the end of this year.

The response of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Modern Language (APPGML) to the government’s consultation on the revised GCSE modern foreign language subject content review will be recorded as one response. Individuals and organisations are always advised to respond directly to government consultations, rather than to be signatories of independent campaigns.

In addition, we know that a number of organisations and individuals who endorsed the APPGML statement also responded to the government consultation separately. By doing so, the government is able to consider responses systematically, including the responses of individuals and organisations to the specific questions in the consultation.

Baroness Barran
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
12th Jul 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what is the cost per annum of the Advanced Maths Premium scheme.

The Advanced Maths Premium was first paid in the 2019-20 academic year, when we allocated £10,630,200 to providers of 16-19 education. In the 2020-21 academic year, we allocated £14,059,800 of funding through the Advanced Maths Premium.

This information is available from 16-19 published allocations data at the following links: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/16-to-19-allocation-data-2020-to-2021-academic-year and https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/16-to-19-allocation-data-2019-to-2020-academic-year. This information can be calculated by totalling the allocations to individual providers in the Advanced Maths Premium column.

12th Jul 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what was the cost in each of the five years leading up to the UK's departure from the EU of the UK’s participation in the Erasmus and Erasmus+ programmes.

While the UK was a member state of the EU, we did not make seperate contributions to individual EU programmes such as Erasmus+, but instead made an overall contribution to the EU budget which was then used to fund those programmes. It is therefore not possible to calculate a figure for the UK government’s direct contributions to Erasmus+.

However, an indicative UK contribution figure can be obtained by taking the total Erasmus+ payments made in each year and applying to it the UK’s funding share of the overall EU budget in that year.

Table 1 gives an indicative estimate of the UK’s Erasmus+ contributions between 2015 and 2019. The UK contributions estimate taken from table 1 in the attachment is included below.

Under Erasmus+, the UK already contributed significantly more than we got out in the form of receipts, and the only terms of offer for continued participation would have required an annual gross contribution of £600 million, or a net contribution in the region of £2 billion over the course of the programme.

The Turing Scheme goes further than Erasmus+ by being truly global. It also goes further in enabling more disadvantaged students to benefit from the opportunities of studying abroad, including by providing extra funding for disadvantaged students, and paying for extra costs for them, including travel costs.

Table 1: UK Indicative Erasmus+ contributions in millions of pounds

2015

2016

2017

2018

2019

UK Indicative Erasmus+ contributions in millions of pounds

209

201

224

241

296

Lord Parkinson of Whitley Bay
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Culture, Media and Sport)
12th Jul 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what is the annual cost of supporting Modern Foreign Languages Hubs.

The annual funding of the existing Mandarin Excellence Programme committed by the department since the launch in 2016 is set out in the table below:

Financial year

2016/17

2017/18

2018/19

2019/20

2020/21

Total

Funding
(£ million)

0.93

1.47

2.63

1.35

2.97

9.35

The programme is led by the Institute of Education, University College London. It initially started with 14 schools and has now grown to 75 schools with over 6,300 pupils, and the increased funding over the period reflects this. The next phase of the programme and funding is due to be announced shortly and will start from September this year.

The funding of the Modern Foreign Language (MFL) Pedagogy Pilot Hubs by contract period, committed by the department, is set out in the table below:

Contract period

Dec 2018
- Dec 2020

Dec 2020
- Dec 2021

Dec 2021
- Dec 2022

Total

Funding
(£ million)

2.17

1.45

1.17

4.79

The MFL Pedagogy Pilot is managed by the National Centre for Excellence for Languages Pedagogy (NCELP) and was launched in December 2018. In addition to the support provided to the 45 schools in the pilot programme, NCELP has also so far developed Key Stage 3 schemes of work, lesson plans and accompanying resources for French, German and Spanish, which are available free of charge through its resource portal for all teachers.

In the 4th year of the programme, NCELP will deliver free professional development courses on MFL curriculum design and pedagogy to over 1,350 teachers nationally and develop fully resourced schemes of work for Key Stage 4 that will align with the new GCSE in French, German and Spanish.

12th Jul 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government how much they contribute per annum to support the Mandarin Excellence Programme.

The annual funding of the existing Mandarin Excellence Programme committed by the department since the launch in 2016 is set out in the table below:

Financial year

2016/17

2017/18

2018/19

2019/20

2020/21

Total

Funding
(£ million)

0.93

1.47

2.63

1.35

2.97

9.35

The programme is led by the Institute of Education, University College London. It initially started with 14 schools and has now grown to 75 schools with over 6,300 pupils, and the increased funding over the period reflects this. The next phase of the programme and funding is due to be announced shortly and will start from September this year.

The funding of the Modern Foreign Language (MFL) Pedagogy Pilot Hubs by contract period, committed by the department, is set out in the table below:

Contract period

Dec 2018
- Dec 2020

Dec 2020
- Dec 2021

Dec 2021
- Dec 2022

Total

Funding
(£ million)

2.17

1.45

1.17

4.79

The MFL Pedagogy Pilot is managed by the National Centre for Excellence for Languages Pedagogy (NCELP) and was launched in December 2018. In addition to the support provided to the 45 schools in the pilot programme, NCELP has also so far developed Key Stage 3 schemes of work, lesson plans and accompanying resources for French, German and Spanish, which are available free of charge through its resource portal for all teachers.

In the 4th year of the programme, NCELP will deliver free professional development courses on MFL curriculum design and pedagogy to over 1,350 teachers nationally and develop fully resourced schemes of work for Key Stage 4 that will align with the new GCSE in French, German and Spanish.

12th Jul 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the cost per annum of restoring the Language Teacher Training Scholarships.

The Department reviews the bursaries and scholarships offered for initial teacher training (ITT) before the start of each annual recruitment cycle. Factors such as historic recruitment, forecast economic conditions, and teacher supply need are considered. Being able to change the financial incentives offered for ITT provides flexibility in responding to the need to attract new teachers and ensures money is spent where it is needed most.

The financial incentives for trainee teachers starting ITT in the academic year 2022/23 will be announced this autumn. In advance of this, the Department will consider the need and potential impact of incentives for Modern Foreign Languages (MFL) alongside the offer for all other subjects.

It is not possible to say what the cost of increasing the MFL bursary or restoring the MFL scholarship would be in future, as this is dependent on the number of eligible trainee teachers that are recruited. The Department publishes ITT census data each year showing the numbers of trainee teachers recruited, from which we can estimate the cost per annum. The published 2019/20 ITT census data shows approximately 1,145 MFL trainees were eligible for either a £26,000 bursary or £28,000 scholarship[1][2][3].

[1] Includes postgraduate MFL trainees with 1st, 2:1 and 2:2 degree classes only from the following routes only: Higher Education Institution, School Centred ITT and School Direct (fee-funded). Total excludes trainees whose degree classes are unknown.

[2] It is possible that some of these trainees may have been ineligible for a bursary or scholarship because they were in fact awarded a degree classification lower than a 2:2.

[3] A small minority of these trainees will also have been ineligible for a bursary or scholarship because they were ineligible for student finance.

12th Jul 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the cost of restoring the Modern Foreign Languages bursary to its pre-2020/21 level of £26,000 per student.

The Department reviews the bursaries and scholarships offered for initial teacher training (ITT) before the start of each annual recruitment cycle. Factors such as historic recruitment, forecast economic conditions, and teacher supply need are considered. Being able to change the financial incentives offered for ITT provides flexibility in responding to the need to attract new teachers and ensures money is spent where it is needed most.

The financial incentives for trainee teachers starting ITT in the academic year 2022/23 will be announced this autumn. In advance of this, the Department will consider the need and potential impact of incentives for Modern Foreign Languages (MFL) alongside the offer for all other subjects.

It is not possible to say what the cost of increasing the MFL bursary or restoring the MFL scholarship would be in future, as this is dependent on the number of eligible trainee teachers that are recruited. The Department publishes ITT census data each year showing the numbers of trainee teachers recruited, from which we can estimate the cost per annum. The published 2019/20 ITT census data shows approximately 1,145 MFL trainees were eligible for either a £26,000 bursary or £28,000 scholarship[1][2][3].

[1] Includes postgraduate MFL trainees with 1st, 2:1 and 2:2 degree classes only from the following routes only: Higher Education Institution, School Centred ITT and School Direct (fee-funded). Total excludes trainees whose degree classes are unknown.

[2] It is possible that some of these trainees may have been ineligible for a bursary or scholarship because they were in fact awarded a degree classification lower than a 2:2.

[3] A small minority of these trainees will also have been ineligible for a bursary or scholarship because they were ineligible for student finance.

23rd Jun 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government when they expect to publish their response to the consultation on proposed reforms to GCSE examinations in French, Spanish and German.

Officials continue to analyse the responses to the consultation and, whilst we have not yet specified a date for publication, it is expected that the government’s response will be published shortly after this year’s school summer holiday.

22nd Feb 2021
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of (1) the effectiveness, and (2) the impact of, Modern Foreign Language Hubs; and if no such assessment has been made, (a) whether they plan to conduct such an assessment, and (b) if so, when.

The National Centre for Excellence for Language Pedagogy (NCELP) programme was established with its main aims being to provide support to secondary schools to improve languages teaching at Key Stages 3 and 4, and to align modern foreign language (MFL) teaching with the recommendations of the Teaching Schools Council’s 2016 MFL Pedagogy Review. This was done so that in pilot schools more pupils will take up GCSEs in MFLs, and schools are enabled to achieve sustainable numbers and group sizes. Key performance indicators (KPIs) were agreed between NCELP and the department which link to these objectives.

As a consequence of school closures over the last year, and NCELP diverting much of its resource to assist the Oak National Academy by developing and recording Key Stage 3 lessons in French, German and Spanish, we have deferred our assessment of performance against KPIs until after December 2021. However, the information gathered to date shows that:

  • 92.6% of all teachers taking part in the pilot reported in September 2020 that they were confident in delivering the MFL pedagogical approach as described in the 2016 MFL Pedagogy Review produced by the Teaching Schools Council; and
  • Uptake of MFL GCSEs in the participating schools has increased by 8.2 percentage points between 2018 and 2020.

In the meantime, NCELP is on course to have completed work developing online resources for teaching and testing in French, German and Spanish in Key Stage 3 by December 2021, which are available free of charge for all MFL teachers at: https://resources.ncelp.org.

9th Dec 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the support for the teaching and learning of German in British universities of the German Academic Exchange Service programmes for (1) the German lektor scheme and (2) the German Language Assistant scheme.

English universities are independent, autonomous institutions and are therefore free to choose which courses they run. Quality is assessed by the Office for Students, the regulator of higher education providers in England. Whilst the government firmly supports the teaching of German and other modern foreign languages in English universities, the government plays no role in the delivery of these specific schemes.

In terms of immigration arrangements, the government has been clear that all EU, EEA, and Swiss citizens must be resident in the UK by 31 December 2020 to be eligible for settled or pre-settled status in the UK under the EU Settlement Scheme. All EU, EEA, and Swiss nationals arriving in the UK from 1 January 2021 will be required to apply for a visa under the new points-based immigration system. People wanting to come into the UK to work from 1 January 2021 will be awarded points for a job offer at the appropriate skill level if they speak English, and if they meet the appropriate salary threshold.

The points-based immigration system is a global system which treats EU and non-EU citizens equally, prioritising individuals’ skills and talent over where a person happens to come from. The UK’s Points Based Immigration System has been designed with huge consideration given to businesses and employers, including the UK higher education sector, which has been consulted by the government throughout.

Lord Parkinson of Whitley Bay
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Culture, Media and Sport)
9th Dec 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have, if any, to make an exemption for (1) German lektors and (2) German language assistants participating in the German Academic Exchange Service programmes, from the standard skilled worker visa regulations in respect of the salary threshold.

English universities are independent, autonomous institutions and are therefore free to choose which courses they run. Quality is assessed by the Office for Students, the regulator of higher education providers in England. Whilst the government firmly supports the teaching of German and other modern foreign languages in English universities, the government plays no role in the delivery of these specific schemes.

In terms of immigration arrangements, the government has been clear that all EU, EEA, and Swiss citizens must be resident in the UK by 31 December 2020 to be eligible for settled or pre-settled status in the UK under the EU Settlement Scheme. All EU, EEA, and Swiss nationals arriving in the UK from 1 January 2021 will be required to apply for a visa under the new points-based immigration system. People wanting to come into the UK to work from 1 January 2021 will be awarded points for a job offer at the appropriate skill level if they speak English, and if they meet the appropriate salary threshold.

The points-based immigration system is a global system which treats EU and non-EU citizens equally, prioritising individuals’ skills and talent over where a person happens to come from. The UK’s Points Based Immigration System has been designed with huge consideration given to businesses and employers, including the UK higher education sector, which has been consulted by the government throughout.

Lord Parkinson of Whitley Bay
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Culture, Media and Sport)
1st Dec 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether, in addition to university student placements, any domestic alternative to Erasmus+ would cover (1) school exchanges for pupils and teachers, (2) technical education and workplace training, (3) work shadowing and youth work, (4) sports, (5) older people, (6) disadvantaged areas, (7) arts projects, and (8) people with disabilities, in line with the current Erasmus+ programme.

Participation in Erasmus+ is subject to our ongoing negotiations with the EU.

In parallel with the negotiations, we are continuing to develop a UK-wide domestic alternative to Erasmus+ as a contingency measure. The Spending Review 2020 committed funding to prepare for a UK-wide domestic alternative, in the event that the UK no longer participates in Erasmus+, to fund outward global education mobility schemes. The government will set out further details on this potential scheme in due course.

As part of our ongoing preparations towards this potential scheme, we have looked at comparable schemes across the globe, including the Swiss European Mobility Scheme. The Department for Education is in regular contact with the Swiss government to discuss education-related matters, maintaining an open dialogue and holding discussions to share insights and best practice, including on the Swiss exchange scheme.

Youth and sport are the responsibility of the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, and it has been considering the provision of a domestic alternative scheme for the youth elements of Erasmus+ as part of the recent Spending Review. Funding was not, however, allocated to a domestic alternative to the youth element of Erasmus+ at the Spending Review.

Erasmus+ Sport is a very small part of the programme, representing only 1.8% of the overall budget. We are already investing significant sums of money in sport programmes which align with Erasmus+ Sport themes and objectives, and do not consider that there is a need to create a specific domestic alternative programme to replace Erasmus+ Sport activities. For example, through Sport England, we are investing more than £1.2 billion from the 2016 financial year to the 2021 financial year on grassroots sport and physical activity programmes.

Lord Parkinson of Whitley Bay
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Culture, Media and Sport)
1st Dec 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made, if any, of the domestic scheme to replace Erasmus+ set up by Switzerland; and if no such assessment has been made, what plans they have to assess the effectiveness of the Swiss replacement scheme before committing to a UK domestic alternative.

Participation in Erasmus+ is subject to our ongoing negotiations with the EU.

In parallel with the negotiations, we are continuing to develop a UK-wide domestic alternative to Erasmus+ as a contingency measure. The Spending Review 2020 committed funding to prepare for a UK-wide domestic alternative, in the event that the UK no longer participates in Erasmus+, to fund outward global education mobility schemes. The government will set out further details on this potential scheme in due course.

As part of our ongoing preparations towards this potential scheme, we have looked at comparable schemes across the globe, including the Swiss European Mobility Scheme. The Department for Education is in regular contact with the Swiss government to discuss education-related matters, maintaining an open dialogue and holding discussions to share insights and best practice, including on the Swiss exchange scheme.

Youth and sport are the responsibility of the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, and it has been considering the provision of a domestic alternative scheme for the youth elements of Erasmus+ as part of the recent Spending Review. Funding was not, however, allocated to a domestic alternative to the youth element of Erasmus+ at the Spending Review.

Erasmus+ Sport is a very small part of the programme, representing only 1.8% of the overall budget. We are already investing significant sums of money in sport programmes which align with Erasmus+ Sport themes and objectives, and do not consider that there is a need to create a specific domestic alternative programme to replace Erasmus+ Sport activities. For example, through Sport England, we are investing more than £1.2 billion from the 2016 financial year to the 2021 financial year on grassroots sport and physical activity programmes.

Lord Parkinson of Whitley Bay
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Culture, Media and Sport)
1st Dec 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the statement in the Spending Review 2020, published on 25 November, that the Department for Education settlement "provides funding to prepare for a UK-wide domestic alternative to Erasmus+, in the event that the UK no longer participates in Erasmus+, to fund outward global education mobilities", whether such funding would be sufficient to provide for reciprocal arrangements as in the current Erasmus+ programme; and what steps are being taken to secure the recognition of other countries for a possible UK domestic alternative scheme.

Participation in Erasmus+ is subject to our ongoing negotiations with the EU.

In parallel with the negotiations, we are continuing to develop a UK-wide domestic alternative to Erasmus+ as a contingency measure. The Spending Review 2020 committed funding to prepare for a UK-wide domestic alternative, in the event that the UK no longer participates in Erasmus+, to fund outward global education mobility schemes. The government will set out further details on this potential scheme in due course.

As part of our ongoing preparations towards this potential scheme, we have looked at comparable schemes across the globe, including the Swiss European Mobility Scheme. The Department for Education is in regular contact with the Swiss government to discuss education-related matters, maintaining an open dialogue and holding discussions to share insights and best practice, including on the Swiss exchange scheme.

Youth and sport are the responsibility of the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, and it has been considering the provision of a domestic alternative scheme for the youth elements of Erasmus+ as part of the recent Spending Review. Funding was not, however, allocated to a domestic alternative to the youth element of Erasmus+ at the Spending Review.

Erasmus+ Sport is a very small part of the programme, representing only 1.8% of the overall budget. We are already investing significant sums of money in sport programmes which align with Erasmus+ Sport themes and objectives, and do not consider that there is a need to create a specific domestic alternative programme to replace Erasmus+ Sport activities. For example, through Sport England, we are investing more than £1.2 billion from the 2016 financial year to the 2021 financial year on grassroots sport and physical activity programmes.

Lord Parkinson of Whitley Bay
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Culture, Media and Sport)
7th Sep 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to encourage and support entrants to GCSE examinations in community languages for the 2020/2021 academic year.

All pupils should have the opportunity to study foreign languages as part of a core academic curriculum and this should include community languages. The department recognises the importance of high quality qualifications in languages such as Polish, Urdu, Arabic, Bengali and Turkish.

At key stage 4, languages, including community languages, are included in the English Baccalaureate (EBacc). Since the introduction of the EBacc performance measure in 2010, the proportion of GCSE entries from pupils in state funded schools in a modern foreign language (MFL) has increased from 40 per cent in 2010 to 47 per cent in 2019.

As with any other GCSE subject, the department expects schools to provide appropriate support to pupils to prepare them for examinations. In relation to the 2020/21 academic year, the department’s guidance to schools reopening from September states that the curriculum should remain broad from year 7 to year 9 so that the majority of pupils are taught a full range of subjects over the year, including sciences, languages, humanities, the arts, physical education/sport, religious education and relationships, sex and health education. The guidance also sets out an expectation that the majority of year 10 and year 11 pupils continue to study their examination subjects, supporting them towards their preferred route to further study. The full opening of schools guidance is available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/actions-for-schools-during-the-coronavirus-outbreak/guidance-for-full-opening-schools.


The department has invested in a range of programmes to increase uptake of languages at GCSE. The £2.41 million MFL Pedagogy Pilot commenced in December 2018 and is designed to improve uptake and attainment in languages at key stages 3 and 4.

3rd Jun 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many candidates for a language GCSE who entered for examination in summer 2020 were subsequently withdrawn by 15 May; and of those, how many were entered for less-taught, heritage or community languages.

The Department does not hold information about candidates who entered for a language GCSE examination in Summer 2020 and were subsequently withdrawn. Exam entries are a matter for the individual, independent exam boards.

30th Apr 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether supplementary schools which are (1) registered as community language examination centres, and (2) not registered as community language examination centres, have been informed that they can provide their language students with teacher assessments and predicted grades on the same basis as mainstream schools.

This is a matter for the Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation (Ofqual) and I have asked its Chief Regulator, Sally Collier, to write directly to the noble Baroness. A copy of her reply will be placed in the House of Lords Library.

30th Apr 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether students studying for GCSEs in a foreign language at a supplementary school will be eligible to sit the examination in the Autumn if they have been unable to do so this summer due to COVID-19.

We are working with the independent qualifications regulator, Ofqual, and the exam boards to ensure that students have the opportunity to sit exams in the autumn. This includes those who have studied at supplementary schools. Ofqual will be consulting on proposed arrangements.

30th Apr 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to ensure that all language students at supplementary schools who have been entered for a GCSE examination in that language this summer but are unable to sit it because of COVID-19 are refunded automatically with their full entrance fee.

The department recognises that schools and colleges want clarity on exam fees following the announcement that GCSE exams will not take place this summer. The department and the exam boards are working together to ensure that they are provided with further information as soon as possible.


7th Jun 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what provisions for the protection of human rights defenders are included in the United Kingdom–Andean Countries Trade Agreement; and what enforcement measures are in place.

Respect for democratic principles and fundamental human rights underpins the United Kingdom–Andean Countries Trade Agreement. The treaty allows for ‘appropriate measures’ to be taken by any member state ‘in accordance with international law’ where breaches occur. The agreement also includes a Trade and Sustainable Development (TSD) chapter, which aims to ensure that both Parties encourage high levels of environmental and labour protection. This chapter provides for an annual TSD Sub-Committee, which is an opportunity for the UK to raise concerns with partner countries where we believe there have been violations of workers’ rights or environmental commitments. The Sub- Committee last met in April 2022.

21st Mar 2022
To ask Her Majesty's Government what advice on (1) language skills, and (2) cultural knowledge, the Export Support Service provides to UK businesses seeking to grow their export business.

The Department for International Trade (DIT) publishes market guides on great.gov.uk to help companies do business in new markets, including advice on language and business culture. DIT’s specialist trade advisors worldwide also offer support to businesses seeking to grow in new markets. The Internationalisation Fund provides match funding to help small and medium sized enterprises overcome barriers to access new markets. This includes consultancy or other professional services for cultural and political advice, and translation services including website design, promotional materials and interpreter services. Funding is subject to availability within individual Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) areas and is accessed via DIT’s Regional Network of International Trade Advisors.

27th Jan 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they have negotiated a continuity agreement for the UK with Peru, Colombia and Ecuador, which takes forward the current UK interests in the EU Free Trade Agreement with those countries; and if so, whether such a continuity agreement includes the trade and sustainable development provisions of Title IX of that agreement.

The UK and three Andean countries signed the UK-Andean Countries Trade Agreement on 15 May 2019, in Quito, Ecuador, ensuring continuity for UK-Andean trade. The agreement carries forward the trade and sustainable development provisions from the EU-Andean agreement. More information about the continuity agreement can be found on the GOV.UK website: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/uk-andean-countries-trade-agreement.

Earl of Courtown
Captain of the Queen's Bodyguard of the Yeomen of the Guard (HM Household) (Deputy Chief Whip, House of Lords)
26th Nov 2020
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they are preparing their guidance Transporting goods between Great Britain and the EU from 1 January 2021: guidance for hauliers and commercial drivers, published on 18 November, in languages other than English; and if so, (1) in which languages it will be available, and (2) whether the translations will be available before 1 January 2021.

The haulier handbook is only one part of the wider package the Government has put in place to help and guide hauliers, which also includes the roll out of 45 Information and Advice Sites and a multimillion pound information campaign, running across the UK and Europe.

The haulier handbook will be available in 14 languages and officials have already published translations in Welsh, Polish and Romanian on GOV.UK.

A full list of languages is below:

  • English
  • Welsh
  • Polish
  • Romanian
  • Czech
  • French
  • German
  • Russian
  • Spanish
  • Bulgarian
  • Dutch
  • Hungarian
  • Lithuanian
  • Turkish

All translations are planned to available online from week commencing Monday 30 November 2020.

Baroness Vere of Norbiton
Parliamentary Secretary (HM Treasury)
1st May 2024
To ask His Majesty's Government what steps they are taking to ensure that the public consultation on updating the NHS constitution is brought to the attention of individuals whose first language is not English.

The Department is committed to supporting people from all backgrounds in accessing the NHS Constitution consultation, in part by ensuring the consultation is well publicised and reaches multiple audiences, including those whose first language is not English.

While there are no plans to publish the consultation in additional languages, the Department is working at pace to publish an easy-read version. The simplified language will make the information more accessible for a broader audience, which may support those whose first language is not English, to access and respond to the consultation.

Lord Markham
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
1st May 2024
To ask His Majesty's Government whether the public consultation on updating the NHS constitution, published on 30 April, is available in languages other than English, and if so, in which languages.

The Department is committed to supporting people from all backgrounds in accessing the NHS Constitution consultation, in part by ensuring the consultation is well publicised and reaches multiple audiences, including those whose first language is not English.

While there are no plans to publish the consultation in additional languages, the Department is working at pace to publish an easy-read version. The simplified language will make the information more accessible for a broader audience, which may support those whose first language is not English, to access and respond to the consultation.

Lord Markham
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
18th Sep 2023
To ask His Majesty's Government whether the scoping review of issues and options for improving community languages translation and interpretation services in the NHS has been completed; and if not, when it is expected to be completed, and when the detailed terms of reference and timetable for this review will be published.

The Healthcare Inequalities Improvement Team in NHS England are completing a scoping and options review of the most effective and appropriate national interventions to facilitate improvements in community language translation, and interpretation services, to meet the needs of communities; and support equitable access, experience, and outcomes for all.

The team are aiming to complete the scoping and options appraisal in November 2023 and to agree recommendations in March 2024. There has not been a decision regarding the publication of the terms of reference.

Lord Markham
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
18th Apr 2023
To ask His Majesty's Government whether all printed information and advice provided to women who are pregnant or in labour about specific conditions and procedures which may be required at short notice are available in languages other than English; and if so, in which languages.

The language and format of information available at short notice to women who are pregnant or in labour about specific conditions and procedures vary, as this is often locally produced in line with the needs of the local population. NHS England has developed some information nationally, which is available in English alongside Arabic, Bengali, Chinese, French, Gujarati, Polish, Portuguese, Punjabi, Spanish and Urdu. It is also available in spoken formats including British Sign Language.

Lord Markham
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
27th Feb 2023
To ask His Majesty's Government how they monitor compliance with the 'Guidance for Commissioners: Interpreting and Translation Services in Primary Care', published by NHS England in September 2018.

The Department does not monitor compliance with this guidance. However, when commissioners, NHS Regions and integrated care boards commission interpreting and translation services for their areas, those contracts would be governed in line with National Health Service guidance and professional standards.

Lord Markham
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)