4. The Second Additional Language (L3) in the BGE: Primary and Secondary Schools
4.1. Percentage of schools providing the full L3 entitlement within the terms of the policy
|Mainstream primary schools||48%|
|Mainstream secondary schools||83%|
|Special primary schools||12%|
|Special secondary schools||22%|
The mainstream results show that for primary schools there is progression towards the implementation of the second additional language (L3) from P5 onwards. For secondary schools, the percentage of full implementation of L3 is higher than L2. An explanation for that could lie with the fact that there are various ways teachers can use to teach L3, making it easier to implement within the timetable.
The results from special schools are very low and reflect the needs and circumstances of the pupils. As the numbers are too small to be representative they will not be presented here.
4.2. Languages offered as L3 in the BGE (primary and secondary)
Mainstream Primary Schools providing the full L3 entitlement
Note: This data contains double counting of some schools. For example, a school could be providing both Spanish and Mandarin as L3 for different year groups. The numbers in the graph will not add up to the overall number of primary schools. This data did not go through the same validation process as the percentage of primary schools providing the full L3 entitlement.
L3 in primary schools is introduced from P5 at the latest, and in addition to L2 which is taught from P1 to P7.
There is a wider variety of languages taught as L3 than L2. The most popular language as L3 is Spanish, whilst there is a more balanced picture across French, German and Mandarin.
Other languages offered as L3 in primary include BSL, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Japanese and Latin. Schools also cited Scots and Makaton. A small proportion offer more than one language.
Survey returns also indicated that approximately half of primary schools do not yet offer an L3.
Mainstream secondary schools providing the full L3 entitlement
Note: This data contains double counting of some schools. This data did not go through the same validation process as the percentage of secondary schools providing the full L2 entitlement.
L3 in secondary schools is taught at some point in S1, S2 or S3, and in addition to L2 which is taught in S1, S2 and S3.
L3 provision in secondary schools tends to mirror primary schools, with Spanish being the most popular, followed by German, French, Mandarin, Gaelic (Learners), Italian and BSL and Urdu.
There is a higher percentage of schools offering more than one language as L3 than in primary schools. Other L3 languages offered included Japanese, Latin and Scots.
4.3. Models used to deliver the full L3 entitlement in primary schools
The full L3 entitlement is provided by 855 primary schools. The models of delivery of the L3 are given in the following table:
|Model type||Percentage of schools|
|Class teacher embedding learning||68%|
|External Visiting Specialist drop-in||24%|
|Internal Visiting Specialist drop-in||24%|
|Team teaching embedding learning||15%|
Note: Some schools will use more than one model type. The percentages will therefore add up to more than 100%.
Evidence indicates that some schools are using the flexibility built into the L3 policy to provide alternative ways of ensuring the entitlement is met. Schools reported including inputs from parents (where parents are either native speakers or have a level of fluency in the language), from senior pupils in the cluster secondary school, or from learners who are native speakers. A number of cluster secondary schools mentioned they provide support from the specialist modern language teachers, resulting in clearer lines of communication and resource sharing between primary and secondary schools.