British MP Nick de Bois fights against dropping Bengali GCSE and A Levels

Nick de Bois, MP for Enfield North, has persuaded the UK government to stop plans by the exam boards to drop Bengali GCSE and A Level qualifications.

Published : 26 March 2015, 12:59 PM
Updated : 26 March 2015, 03:55 PM

On Tuesday, Mar 24, De Bois secured a parliamentary adjournment debate on the future of so called "Lesser Taught Languages”.
The conservative deputy led a cross-party coalition of MPs in a parliament debate on Mar 24.
He set out how language skills are vital to the UK's future and how he would fight to save the GCSE and A Level examinations.
"Britain has a unique opportunity to build an even closer relationship with Bangladesh because of both the historic and current relationship between the two countries, and in particular because of the large Bangladeshi diaspora here in Britian," said de Bois.
"The proposals to stop awarding GCSE and A Level by the exam Bodies is short sighted and wrong," he added.
During the debate, De Bois made the case for recognising the value of these foreign language skills.
He said current and future generations of Bengali speakers should be able to take them on to university and beyond, and strengthen ever close ties with Bangladesh.
Education Minister Nick GIbb agreed to demands that he meet with school exam boards urgently and urge them to review their plans to drop Bengali, and other lesser-known language qualifications.
“The case for learning lesser known foreign languages is simple: Britain is a trading nation, one of the world’s largest
"But as the new economies emerge around the world - such as Bangladesh, Mexico, Turkey and  Indonesia - we need to make sure that our next generation of youngsters are ready to do business with these countries by speaking their language,” said De Bois.
“Though they are officially referred to as ‘lesser taught languages’, really these are the languages of the future and the children and grandchildren of Bangladeshi immigrants to this country can help secure ever closer ties with Bangladesh by being our businessmen and women, ambassadors and civic leaders of the future.”

Toufique Imrose Khalidi
Editor-in-Chief and Publisher