More bad news from the Higher Education Funding Council on applications for language degrees, now down to 12140 from 16300 last year and 21,490 in 2005-6.
HEFCE has been spending £7.3m on yet another quango, routes into languages, that began in August 2013 and has so far had no impact whatsoever. It's unlikely that it will. The fall in applications reflects the fall in A level entries, which can be traced back to the gap between GCSE and A level and to the weaknesses in teaching at KS3 that have been criticised by HMI. There is no research on the impact of mixed ability teaching in all of this, and there should be. Spending money on quangos - and something between 150 and 200 million pounds has gone up in smoke in this way over the years - is no substitute for getting the teaching right.