Labour pledge to safeguard Hebrew qualifications
search

The latest Jewish News

Read this week’s digital edition

Click Here

Labour pledge to safeguard Hebrew qualifications

Hebrew would remain a part of the GCSE and A-Level curriculum under a Labour government, the party’s education spokesman Tristram Hunt has said.

The pledge comes amid uncertainty over the future of qualifications in modern and ancient Hebrew, which, along with several other languages including Polish, Bengali, Portugese and Turkish, are set to be axed by exam boards in 2017.

AQA will no longer offer Modern Hebrew at A-Level, and OCR is to discontinue its A-Level in Biblical Hebrew. 

Launching the campaign on a visit to a Gurdwara in Brentford, Hunt said: “We need these languages so young people can connect with and celebrate their heritage.

“I have been very clear on the language qualifications facing the axe: not on my watch. Labour is the only party committed to saving these crucial language qualifications. Losing them would limit our place in the world.”

Speaking in the House of Commons in March, Tory education minister Nick Gibb said that “learning a foreign language is both a great pleasure and an excellent preparation for life in a modern country such as Britain, which has an outward looking and globalised economy”.

Despite this, Gibb said “small numbers” of uptake in lesser-studied languages such as Hebrew created difficulties for exam boards the government have refused to commit to maintaining qualifications in Hebrew.

The threat to Hebrew qualifications at a time when British firms have identified foreign language skills as particularly important – a report from the CBI last year found that almost two-thirds of businesses identified a need for employees with additional languages.

Support your Jewish community. Support your Jewish News

Thank you for helping to make Jewish News the leading source of news and opinion for the UK Jewish community. Today we're asking for your invaluable help to continue putting our community first in everything we do.

Unlike other Jewish media, we do not charge for content. That won’t change. Because we are free, we rely on advertising to cover our costs. This vital lifeline, which has dropped in recent years, has fallen further due to coronavirus.

For as little as £5 a month you can help sustain the vital work we do in celebrating and standing up for Jewish life in Britain.

Jewish News holds our community together and keeps us connected. Like a synagogue, it’s where people turn to feel part of something bigger. It also proudly shows the rest of Britain the vibrancy and rich culture of modern Jewish life.

You can make a quick and easy one-off or monthly contribution of £5, £10, £20 or any other sum you’re comfortable with.

100% of your donation will help us continue celebrating our community, in all its dynamic diversity...

Engaging

Being a community platform means so much more than producing a newspaper and website. One of our proudest roles is media partnering with our invaluable charities to amplify the outstanding work they do to help us all.

Celebrating

There’s no shortage of oys in the world but Jewish News takes every opportunity to celebrate the joys too, through projects like Night of Heroes, 40 Under 40 and other compelling countdowns that make the community kvell with pride.

Pioneering

In the first collaboration between media outlets from different faiths, Jewish News worked with British Muslim TV and Church Times to produce a list of young activists leading the way on interfaith understanding.

Campaigning

Royal Mail issued a stamp honouring Holocaust hero Sir Nicholas Winton after a Jewish News campaign attracted more than 100,000 backers. Jewish News also produces special editions of the paper highlighting pressing issues including mental health and Holocaust remembrance.

Easy access

In an age when news is readily accessible, Jewish News provides high-quality content free online and offline, removing any financial barriers to connecting people.

Voice of our community to wider society

The Jewish News team regularly appears on TV, radio and on the pages of the national press to comment on stories about the Jewish community. Easy access to the paper on the streets of London also means Jewish News provides an invaluable window into the community for the country at large.

We hope you agree all this is worth preserving.

read more:
comments