Latest News

A selection of language-related news. Does not claim to be comprehensive or represent the views of SCILT.

International Education

Turing Scheme 2022-23

28 February 2022 (Scottish Government)

Year 2 of the Turing Scheme is launching today. This will provide organisations with the opportunity to register projects taking place in the 2022-23 Academic Year.

There are four key actions that can be taken from 28 February:

Visit the updated Turing website to:

  • Register to apply for funding
  • Subscribe to the new Capita newsletter mailing list
  • Sign up for webinars
  • Start planning your organisation’s application

Note the programme is now administered by Capita on behalf of the DfE. They have a dedicated team of staff available to help plan and submit applications. Support will be available from 28 February via the Contact Us page on the website and via an online system for those who register.


International Education Week

2 November 2021 (British Council)

International Education Week (IEW) is back! Every November we come together to recognise the value of bringing the world into the classroom and celebrate international work in schools. This year's event takes place 15-19 November.

This year we are bringing you The Climate Connection to help you empower your students to take positive action for a greener tomorrow. There are lots of ways you and your school can get involved. Visit the British Council's IEW website to find out about online live events and training, classroom resources, working with international partner schools and more.


Climate resources for school teachers

23 August 2021 (British Council)

To help you support positive action towards climate change in your school, here’s a round-up of British Council's online events, programmes and classroom resources, which includes a section for language educators.

All activities support the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal on Climate Action.


Supported partnerships through Connecting Classrooms

11 August 2021 (British Council)

If you are new to international collaboration a short-term supported partnership with Connecting Classrooms through Global Learning could open the door to a world of opportunities for your school. 

Supported partnerships are designed for state-funded schools that are new to international collaboration who wish to start their global learning journey without grant funding. 

Clusters of participants – representing a maximum of five UK and five overseas schools – work together on a project linked to a Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) that is related to Cop26, the UN Climate Change Conference being held in the UK in November 2021. The project will be delivered during a six week period, starting in November 2021, and will be followed by a final evaluation activity. Please note that only one teacher per eligible UK and overseas school can apply to participate in these collaborations.

We will help you develop your project through three one-hour webinars delivered by a global learning practitioner, who will also provide guidance, CPD and support with any questions that you may have.

Visit the Britsh Council Connecting Classrooms website for more information and sign up to take part by 17 September 2021.


5 ways to teach global citizenship and collaboration

24 May 2021 (TES)

With global citizenship more important than ever, here are some ideas for international collaboration between schools.

Whether students were locked down in London or Lagos, millions of young people around the world experienced what it was like to have their learning disrupted and now understand, to some degree, what it means not to have free movement or access.

“The pandemic has created a unique window of insight into the global challenges that we all face,” says Carl McCarthy, executive headteacher at GLF Schools multi-academy trust.

And this is something he’s tried to delve into with his students, noticing the disparity in provision that some young people face nationally, as well as globally. But he has also been celebrating the staggering kindness, innovation and teamwork we’ve witnessed, and he has been harnessing the technology that brings together citizens in opposite corners of the world.

“In this new, post-Brexit, global-facing context, we have the opportunity for our students to build knowledge and understanding together with fellow students from around the world – all who have been facing similar challenges at the same time and all who have seen similar strengths in human spirit and the triumph of science and technology to offer solutions to some of the greatest problems that we have collectively faced,” says McCarthy.


The Young Scot Awards have gone global

10 February 2021 (Young Scot/British Council)

Nominate a Young Person or Group for the Internationalism Young Scot Award by 14 February 2021! The award is for young people who’ve worked hard to maintain global connections through arts, education, skills or languages.


GlobeScotters – supporting young people to embrace international experiences

29 October 2020 (Young Scot)

British Council Scotland, the Scottish Government and Young Scot are teaming up to deliver 'GlobeScotters' – a campaign encouraging young people to embrace the international experiences available to them.

This campaign is a direct response to COVID-19. It aims to support young people in Scotland to connect with international opportunities available to them, whilst supporting them to maintain an international outlook. 

To find out more about their opinions on international education, experiences and what coronavirus has meant to international opportunities, young people are invited to complete the new GlobeScotters survey, which is live until 1 December 2020. 


Action on climate change

26 October 2020 (British Council)

British Council eTwinning is offering free live CPD and resources on climate change throughout November. Help your class to tackle #ClimateChange together with pupils from across the world.

Visit the British Council eTwinning website for more information. As well as the Climate Change November programme, you can also find other ready made step-by-step guides to help you start an international project. 


International Education Week is back from 16-20 November 2020!

22 October 2020 (British Council)

Every November we come together to recognise the value of bringing the world into the classroom and celebrate international work in schools. This year we are excited to be going online. For the first time ever, we are offering a week of fantastic events that you can access wherever you are in the world.

The line-up is packed with online webinars, ideas and activities to keep us connected by learning and enable young people to take action on the global issues that matter to them today. 

So whether it's a session on increasing language uptake in schools that interests you, or learning about other cultures throughout the world, visit the website for more information about the range of free webinars and activities on offer. 


International Education Week 2020

8 October 2020 (British Council)

To celebrate International Education Week 2020 (16-20 November), British Council is offering three opportunities for pupils and language teachers:

  1. 'Welcome to the Arab World' webinar - Friday 20 November from 13:30-14:30

In collaboration with the Qatar Foundation International’s (QFI) Arabic Language and Culture programme a second ‘Welcome to the Arab World’ webinar event for upper secondary pupils (Year 9 and above) from any school.

This event will include sessions ‘An Introduction to Arabic language and cultures’, a session with Zaina Erhaim, a Syrian journalist who was reporting on the Syrian war from within Syria. She is currently a refugee in the UK and the Institute for War and Peace Reporting (IWPR)'s Communications Manager. Zaina will speak about her life in Syria before and during the war and as a refugee and a live performance and conversation by Syrian American hip-hop artist Omar Offendum. Now living in Los Angeles, California, Omar is also a designer, poet and peace activist whose work blends Arabic and English words and rhythms.

This event will be a Teams Live broadcast to schools. There will be time for questions from pupils to all the speakers. NB this session is designed for those with no previous knowledge of Arabic

To attend this event, please register by completing our online form

  1. To celebrate International Education Week, British Council and Qatar Foundation International’s (QFI) Arabic Language and Culture programme is delighted to offer two opportunities for primary and lower secondary pupils;
  • An online, traditional, Arabic story-telling workshop for a maximum of 30 participants on Monday 16 November (three slots will be available at 9.00, 10.30 & 13.30).
  • An opportunity to connect your class with a native Arabic speaker through the NaTakallam project  on Tuesday 17 November at 11.00, Wednesday 18 November at 12.00 and Thursday 19 November at 13.00. The speaker will be able to discuss Arabic language and culture with your class, as well as share their own experiences as a refugee.

If you would like to express interest for either of these opportunities please contact  by Monday 19 October and include your school details. Successful applicants will be chosen at random. 

For more information on the Arabic Language and Culture programme at the British Council please visit our website  or email the team .

  1. Languages for all: how do we get there? A solutions-focussed look at practical steps schools can take to transform MFL uptake and success. 

The British Council and the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Modern Languages are proud to present this webinar hosted by the British Council on Monday 16 November 2020 from 16.30–17.30 GMT on Microsoft Teams.

This event will include the following presentations:

1.    Pedagogy in MFL at KS3 and KS4: ways forward for schools.
Presented by Ian Bauckham, CEO of the Tenax Schools Trust and Chair of the Teaching Schools Council’s Modern Foreign Languages Pedagogy Review.

2.    Successful primary-secondary transition: ways to give students the best possible start in Year 7.
Presented by Suzanne O'Farrell, MFL Consultant, ASCL.

3.    Fresh approaches to bringing languages alive through cultural knowledge and international connections.
Presented by Oliver Hopwood, Languages teacher.

Followed by Q&A and discussion.

Register for the webinar on the British Council website.

International Education Week 2019

5 November 2019 (British Council)

International Education Week takes place 18-22 November 2019, and British Council has a range of ways to help your school #BeInternational.

International partnerships have changed the lives of pupils in thousands of schools. Pupils who have learnt new languages, developed their understanding of different cultures, and discovered more about the global issues that affect us all. Here are some of the ways you can participate in International Education Week 2019:

  • Take the #BeInternational languages quiz 
  • Enter our Unexpected Voices speechwriting competition
  • Partner with a school in Europe through eTwinning 
  • Partner with a school outside Europe with Connecting Classrooms through Global Learning 
  • Download The Great Languages Challenge and get your students to design their own challenges for their classmates or peers in their partner school overseas.
  • Apply for funding to take your students on an international exchange
  • Get recognised for your international work through the International School Award . 
  • Share your international activity with us using the hashtag #BeInternational 

Visit the British Council website to find out more.


How to make children citizens of the world

9 August 2019 (TES)

One head explains how a partnership with a school in Palestine has helped pupils to gain a new perspective on the world.

In the 21 years that I have worked at Lockerbie Primary School, we have developed our international curriculum to help change the perception of what most people think of when they hear Lockerbie – the air tragedy in 1988 – and instead showcase our town to the world in a more positive light and help broaden pupils’ horizons, too.

We’ve done this in numerous ways, from the European Union’s Erasmus+ programme, which provides funding to schools for international activities, to working on a number of British Council eTwinning projects, most notably Hands of the World, which brings children of the world together through music and Makaton.

But the international connection that has sparked the most joy over the years has been our link with the Al Shurooq School for Blind Children in Palestine.

The partnership began in 2005 after a series of emails between me and Al Shurooq’s founder, Helen Shehadeh. Our local minister, who met her on a visit to Bethlehem, introduced me to her.

By the end of the year, as pupils, parents and members of the wider school community looked on, I was using my mobile phone and a microphone to talk to Helen during our Christmas assembly. Two of our P7 pupils, aged 11, then spoke with two pupils from Al Shurooq about their respective schools and how they celebrate the festive season, before wishing each other a “happy and peaceful Christmas”. It was one of the most moving moments in my whole career.

Around five years ago we moved on to focused, whole-school joint curricular projects after Ruba Aburdeinah was appointed as the new director at Al Shurooq.

These mini-projects have primarily centred on the United Nations’ International Day of Peace in September. Every year each of my 12 primary classes, plus our nursery classes and Learning Centre for children aged 2-18 with complex and continuing needs, exchanges work on the theme of peace with a different partner school from around the world. Last year, we exchanged items with schools in 15 different countries, with our Learning Centre pupils making “peace postcards” to send to Al Shurooq.

Music has proved to be a unifying force, too, with students using the World Voice Songbook to learn about each other’s cultures through traditional songs in each other’s language.

We have also enhanced pupils’ understanding of life in Palestine through the Culture in a Box project. This eTwinning initiative asks pupils to choose 10 items they think best represent their culture and explain why. These items then go into a shoebox, which is exchanged with boxes from schools in other countries.

Refugee Week is also an important focus for us, once again prompted by our connection with Al Shurooq. This year we took part in Refugee Week’s Ration Challenge, which asked people to eat and drink the same as a Syrian refugee living in a camp in Jordan for a week. Our class teachers also led themed activities throughout the week and we invited parents and the wider community to attend a Time for Reflection assembly.

(Note - subscription required to access full article).


Erasmus+: Global skills for a global future

22 March 2018 (British Council)

The debate over the details of the UK’s future collaboration with the EU is at a critical stage. Emma Skelton reports on a recent expert seminar on the future of UK-EU partnerships for higher education.

The British Council and the Centre for European Policy Studies recently convened a high-level policy dialogue in Brussels on ‘The Future of the EU-UK Partnership on Higher Education and Student Mobility’. This was part of a series of events between key EU and UK policymakers and influencers examining the implications of Brexit for existing collaboration in the sectors of international development, culture and education. 

Much discussion at the event focussed on the Erasmus+ programme. Erasmus+ is the largest provider of student mobility for British students to countries in Europe and beyond. Contributors to the seminar highlighted the importance of the UK to the scheme as a whole, as one of the most popular destination countries, which speakers attributed in part to the excellent reputation of UK universities. They also emphasised the call from British companies for more talent with international experience, intercultural awareness and language skills, which can all be gained through mobility programmes such as Erasmus+.


Online course: Learning for Sustainability: Connecting Classrooms through critical thinking and problem solving

9 March 2018 (British Council)

This professional learning initiative by the University of Edinburgh, in partnership with the British Council, is a timely opportunity for teachers to grapple with what Learning for Sustainability means, what existing and new skills and knowledge are required, and how this might all look in the your school context. The10-week active learning course takes a Learning for Sustainability approach, which involves critical thinking and problem solving, participation, and practitioner enquiry.

This online course runs from 16 March - 26 May 2018.


Learning for Sustainability

20 February 2018 (SCOTDEC )

The Scottish Development Education Centre SCOTDEC is launching a Europe-wide project for secondary teachers which aims to support them to add a Global Citizenship dimension to their subject teaching – probably with a focus on BGE. There is a focus on teaching controversial issues such as climate change and migration as well as the UN Sustainable Development Goals. The first phase of the project is the creation of small teacher working groups around 5 curriculum areas – Science, Maths, English, Modern Languages and Social Subjects who will receive training on Global Citizenship and develop classroom materials. This is a fantastic opportunity for teachers to get involved in a project and network with colleagues across Europe. If you are interested then please contact Charlotte Dwyer at SCOTDEC by email.

Gain recognition for your school’s international work

28 November 2017 (Schools Online)

If you are already planning to do international work in your school over the academic year 2017/18 you could apply for the International School Award and join our prestigious national award ceremony.

Although it’s called an award, everyone who meets a given standard gets the accreditation. That’s because we believe that everyone who is willing to put the work in to enrich the curriculum with international work is worthy of celebration.


Gaining international experience and learning new languages enhances careers

17 November 2017 (British Council Scotland)

For International Education Week, we spoke to John Crawford, Team Leader, Education at Scottish Development International, about the importance of being globally mobile.


It is essential that education and skills provision builds the knowledge and capability to work well internationally

15 October 2017 (British Council Scotland)

For International Education Week 2017 we asked John Swinney, Deputy First Minister and Cabinet Secretary for Education and Skills, about the Scottish Government's efforts to engage young people in international activity.


Kick start your international project with these free resources!

14 November 2017 (British Council)

Until 7 December 2017, UK teachers who register an eTwinning project can choose to be posted a travelling eTwinning teddy bear or a virtual reality headset. We will also post an eTwinning wall map, homework and a passport challenge.

The pack that we will send to you contains pre-prepared, cross-curricular homework challenges spanning key stages one to five, all designed to help you kick-start your first international project with eTwinning.


Share your project images and videos with us on Twitter @eTwinningUK via #eTmaps and we will award the class with the most retweeted post with £500 worth of Amazon vouchers on 8 December.


We must help our young people to embrace internationalism

14 November 2017 (British Council Scotland)

For International Education Week 2017, Jackie Killeen, Director, British Council Scotland, writes about why we need to encourage young people to embrace internationalism.


Commonwealth Class children's short story writing competition

13 November 2017 (British Council)

What images, emotions or memories come to mind when you think of the word ‘Peace’? Children around the world are invited to capture its meaning for this year’s Commonwealth Class Short Story Writing Competition. The competition offers a unique opportunity for students to become part of the Commonwealth’s rich storytelling heritage and to be in with the chance of winning some great prizes!


New resources from Schools Online for International Education Week

29 October 2017 (Schools Online)

International Education Week is just around the corner, running from 13 to 17 November.

This year Schools Online is inviting you and your class to take The Great Schools Online Challenge. Sound intriguing? A series of language-themed activity sheets encourage students to find out more about different languages and cultures. Can your students find out what the world’s most spoken language is? Or, how about learning how to write a phrase in a language with a different script? Download the resource

You can also download other activity ideas to help you celebrate. Schools Online will be adding to these over the following weeks, so go and take a look.

Bring the world into your school

24 August 2017 (British Council)

We offer many ways to help enhance learning and teaching in schools in Scotland. Raising attainment, building literacy and numeracy, and helping bridge the attainment gap are high on the schools agenda. An international dimension can be motivational for staff and learners, and has been shown to make a real difference in these priority areas.

Our professional development opportunities, curriculum resources and international linking programmes offer a range of exciting and innovative approaches to learning and raising attainment.

Our Bring the World into your School booklet details each of our programmes and shows how they have been developed to strengthen the delivery of Curriculum for Excellence. We also outline how international education can be used across Scotland to improve whole school performance.

Visit the website for more information about the Bring the World into your School initiative, the Learning for Sustainability programme, eTwinning, Erasmus+ funded projects and Language Assistants programme and how these can support and benefit Scottish schools.


Campaign seeks to double share of UK students studying abroad

25 April 2017 (THE)

A campaign aimed at doubling the proportion of UK students who spend time abroad during their degree has been launched by Universities UK International.

The new target forms the second phase of the organisation’s UK Strategy for Outward Mobility, which since 2013 has aimed to increase the share of students who have an international experience. However, the strategy has not previously set a figure.

Just 6.6 per cent of full-time undergraduates in the UK undertook international placements during their degree in 2014. The campaign seeks to increase this figure to 13.2 per cent by 2020 in order to “create a new generation of global graduates and a higher education culture in which international opportunities are an aspiration for all students”.


Give your curriculum an international edge

6 January 2017 (British Council)

Spark enthusiasm for international learning by getting your school community on board with the International School Award.

Managed by the British Council, the International School Award is a supportive and motivational framework that guides schools through their international work. With three certified levels, and free in the UK, the award will take you from introducing international work to the curriculum, to embedding it within your school’s culture.

Following an accessible methodology you will forge links with partner schools around the world, enhance your curriculum and prepare your students for life as global citizens.

Visit the British Council Schools Online website to find out more about how your school can grow and develop with the International School Award and read the article below from the British Council Voices blog which offers advice on 'Six ways to make your school more international.'


Related Links

Six ways to make your school more international (British Council Voices blog, 14 November 2016)

Too few UK students are studying overseas, and it’s a problem

17 November 2016 (THE)

This week is the British Council’s International Education Week, which promotes the benefits of international learning and cultural exchange.

The UK is a global hub for international students with more than 400,000 studying here last year. Yet British students travelling outside the UK to study is relatively rare, and this is a problem. Just 1.3 per cent of UK students travelled abroad to study or go on work placement in 2014-15.

For graduates to find jobs and succeed in today’s post-Brexit world, they need international and cross-cultural knowledge. It is also critical for the UK’s competitiveness in international markets that the next generation entering the workplace understands how to compete globally.

Employers expect graduates to appreciate cultural diversity, universal business language and be familiar with globalisation. However, in terms of having a global mindset, nearly a quarter of employers (24 per cent) have rated graduates as weak in this area.


International School Award webinars

9 October 2016 (British Council)

The British Council are holding a series of free webinars during October and November that aim to support schools with submission of the Action plan for Accreditation/Reaccreditation level of the International School Award prior to the deadline on 13 November 2016.

Visit the Schools Online website for further details and to register.


Generation UK – China

6 October 2016 (British Council)

The British Council is pleased to announce a new partnership with the Scottish Government to support more students from Scottish universities to undertake internships in China through the British Council’s Generation UK – China campaign. The partnership will be focused on supporting Scottish students from low-income backgrounds to gain international experience in the world’s second-largest economy.

Minister for Further Education, Higher Education and Science, Shirley-Anne Somerville, said:

“This is a fantastic opportunity for Scottish students to develop highly valuable knowledge and skills working in one of the world’s fastest-growing and most dynamic economies. The Scottish Government’s support for this programme underlines our commitment to investing in Scotland’s future workforce and further strengthening our growing engagement with China.”

The Generation UK – China campaign will assist the Scottish Government in delivering its International Framework and in further strengthening relations with China. It will also develop the academic achievement and employability of students and recent graduates of Scotland’s higher education institutions.

“My experience interning in Beijing was fast-paced, exciting and always engaging,” said Justine Porter, a graduate of the University of Dundee who completed a two-month internship at a law firm in Beijing through the Generation UK – China campaign last year.

Visit the British Council website for more information.


Students undervalue study and work abroad, report argues

21 September 2016 (The Pie News)

Many students who have access to international experiences during higher education don’t realise their value until after they have graduated, according to a recent survey. Study abroad, overseas internships, language courses and intercultural exchanges are all overlooked by students during their studies, it found.


Global Collaboration Day - 15 September

8 September 2016 (Global Education Conference)

Students, teachers, and organisations will celebrate global collaboration on 15 September 2016!

On this day (and beyond), experienced global educators and professionals will host connective projects and events and invite public participation. The primary goals of this whole day event are to demonstrate the power of global connectivity in classrooms, schools, institutions of informal learning and universities around the world, and to introduce others to the tools, resources and projects that are available to educators today.

Between now and 1 October 2016, global educators will design collaborative projects in which other students and teachers may participate during the course of the 2016-2017 school year. The objective is to create and present as many globally connective projects for students and educators as possible.

If you would like to design an activity for Global Collaboration Day (15 September) in which you promote your upcoming project, please get your project submitted by 11 September. Or you can join any of the listed events for an introduction to projects which interest you.

Visit the Global Collaboration Day website for more information and details as to how you can get involved.


Connecting Classrooms school partnership programme

31 May 2016 (British Council)

Connecting Classrooms is a global education programme brought to you by the British Council in partnership with the Department for International Development (DFID).

It offers a free learning journey which helps you to improve your classroom practice and develop your ideas with like-minded teachers internationally.

By developing and networking with thousands of teachers across the world, the British Council aims to help young people develop the knowledge, skills and values to live and work in a globalised economy.

To find out more about the programme and how to take part, visit the British Council Schools Online website, where you can also hear a participating teacher reflect on her time visiting Nigeria with Connecting Classrooms.


How to prepare students for international communication

25 May 2016 (British Council Voices)

To communicate successfully in an international environment, you need to be able to grasp what is being said and respond appropriately.

In this blog, Chia Suan Chong offers three strategies to help students use English in international environments, including considering different cultural views of the same situation - an ideal exercise for those with a multinational class.


TES School Awards 2016 - deadline extended

8 March 2016 (TES)

There are still a few days left to get your nomination in for the International Award category of this year's TES School Awards.

This award is for the school with the most innovative international strategy, ranging from initiatives to improve pupils’ and teachers’ understanding of other countries, languages and cultures to full-scale international partnerships.

You will need to demonstrate the impact this strategy has had across the school and the wider community. The judges will be keen to see clear achievements and quantifiable evidence of the success of any initiatives.

Visit the TES School Awards 2016 website for full details and to submit your nomination by 13 March 2016.


Let’s talk about wider cultural dialogue

25 February 2016 (THE)

In the very near future, the Arts and Humanities Research Council will announce the large projects that it will finance over the next four years as part of its Open World Research Initiative.

The scheme seeks to provide “a new and exciting vision for languages research in response to the challenges and opportunities presented by a globalized research environment”. While the individual projects will no doubt be excellent, they will also address a range of broader issues at the heart of the study of modern languages today.

In common with any other subject, modern languages needs to articulate a strong sense of what it stands for (especially considering the national decline in its provision) and why it is important. Equally, in an age that is increasingly defined as post-national and mobile, all research and teaching must confront the reality of globalisation. If one works on a European culture – and I write as an Italianist – then one has, more and more, to explain its relevance in global terms.


‘Teachers should do more to ensure that the benefits of EU membership are understood by our students’

22 February 2016 (TES)

Teachers are, in the majority, internationalists and understand the benefits of collaboration across different countries, writes a leading educationist.


Job opportunity for Scottish teachers in China

18 February 2016 (CISS)

The school principal of the newly built Suzhou Experimental School which is affiliated to Nanjing Normal University has asked for our assistance in recruiting at least one Foreign Teacher of English. The school sees it as crucial to the quality of their English Language teaching effort to employ a native English speaker as part of their team and is very keen to recruit a suitable person from any sector who has had experience of the Scottish education system.

In addition to a full competitive salary calibrated to be commensurate with expectations in Scotland, they would provide: on-site accommodation of a very high standard; all meals; and airfares to and from UK. The school would expect the successful candidate to commit to a two year contract; starting date open to negotiation.

Please note your interest with Natasha Bowman before 29 February 2016

International School Award

11 February 2016 (British Council)

There are three entry points to the International School Award: Foundation, Intermediate and Accreditation. The level your school is at will depend on how much international work you have already done.

Hosting a language assistant automatically qualifies you for the Foundation Level of the International School Award.

Visit the British Council Schools Online website for more information.


Why native English speakers fail to be understood in English – and lose out in global business

10 February 2016 (The Conversation)

Language skills are often trumpeted as a cornerstone of social integration, allowing citizens to participate fully in their host communities. British prime minister David Cameron recently announced a £20m fund for English language lessons to tackle radicalisation in the UK, for example. Similarly, US presidential hopeful Donald Trump has called for assimilation and English-speaking in the US.

But with transnational mobility and trade a defining feature of our times, what of Cameron’s or Trump’s own supporters and their ability to speak English within a wider international community?

Native English speakers are infamously unable to speak languages other than their own. As well as being a professional handicap, this has been shown to hinder exporters and hurt trade.

And now ironically, there is mounting evidence that in international business, native English speakers are failing to integrate as a result of their shortcomings when it comes to tailoring their English for this context. When it comes to English – the international language not only for business but also higher education and cross-border collaboration – research shows that, far from being able to rest on their laurels, native speakers are not masters of the world’s global language.


Erasmus+: Providing more and better opportunities to support Europe's future generations

26 January 2016 (European Commission)

In its first year, Erasmus+, the bigger and more fit-for-purpose programme for education, training, youth and sport, is already living up to expectations.

With a budget of over €2 billion in its initial year, Erasmus+ has already offered more than one million people the opportunity to take part in 18.000 funded projects. More flexible opportunities for collaboration across sectors are also helping Europe's education, training, youth and sport systems to try out innovative practices and contribute to reform and modernisation.

Reports published today offer the first results one year after the start of the Erasmus+ programme and can be accessed on the European Commission's website.


Winners announced: Secondary school writing competition

14 December 2015 (British Council)

In partnership, Education Scotland and British Council Scotland launched a secondary school writing competition to promote international education in schools and to find pupils' views on how international they thought their school is.

To enter, Scottish secondary school pupils were asked to submit a short essay answering the question below:

‘How international is your school and how International could it be? Please write about how international experience has shaped or could shape your time at school.’

We received an overwhelming number of submissions from pupils across Scotland and the three winning entries can be seen on the British Council website.

Congratulations to the winners and their schools!


Erasmus+ December update

10 December 2015 (Erasmus+)

Support for applying for Erasmus+ funding can be found in this most recent newsletter from Erasmus+. This support includes a series of webinars, advice on opening the eforms and links to some new and improved resources.


British Council news

30 November 2015 (British Council Schools Online)

The British Council has a number of resources and partnership working opportunities they offer to schools in the UK.  Below are some of their forthcoming developments with a language or international element which may be of interest to teachers:

  • Shakespeare lives - Designed as a cross-curricular activity pack which could also be part of project with a partner school overseas, this resource will be available mid-December and will be available in Welsh, Chinese and Arabic.
  • Teaching the core skills - In today’s globalised world children not only need to be able to communicate and collaborate; they also need to be prepared to do so interculturally, in diverse and often multilingual settings. More information about teaching the communication and collaboration module can be accessed on page 14 of the brochure: Unlocking a world of potential. Sign up to Schools Online to access the training package.
  • Employ a language assistant in Scottish schools - Employing a British Council Language Assistant is a unique way to broaden your pupils' understanding of the world, improve their language skills and increase their cultural awareness. See the online video. Applications open 4 January 2016.
  • International School Award (ISA) - Read about Portlethen Academy's cross-curricular project which took them to France and earned them an ISA in recognition of the global dimension of their work.

International Education Week 2015

12 November 2015 (British Council)

We know that familiarity with other cultures and modern foreign languages skills are an essential part of preparing young people to work in the increasingly globalised economy - take your work one step further by taking part in International Education Week 2015 (#IEW15) between 16-20 November.

The theme this year is about ‘my international journey’. At the British Council we provide a number of opportunities to support teachers and young people with their international journeys – both inside and outside of the classroom. 

There are plenty of ways you can get involved in International Education Week. Start planning now with our top five activities.  The Homework Challenge contains a range of fun activities such as creating a song in a modern foreign language or trying new cuisines from different cultures.

See the British Council website for more information and use their attached press release template to get your IEW activities covered by the local press.


Related Files

Five ways to be a global student without doing a year abroad

9 November 2015 (The Guardian)

As a language student, I was lucky enough to have a year abroad as part of my degree. I spent it in Chile, and learned a lot more Spanish and real life skills than I ever would have done sat in a lecture hall.

But for some students, a year abroad isn’t an option. Either it’s not offered as part of their course, or a year is just too long to spend away from home.

For those who don’t want to miss out on the benefits of globetrotting while they study but can’t take a full year out, there are still many opportunities available that can offer an equally valuable international experience. Here are five suggestions.


Erasmus+ 2016 applications

20 October 2015 (Erasmus+)

The European Commission has released the 2016 application deadlines for Erasmus+. All the deadlines and information on the types of activities you can apply for are contained in the 2016 Call for Proposals document and the 2016 Programme Guide, both of which you can download from our Key Resources page. The Call for Proposals is an overview document containing all the deadlines for 2016, while the Programme Guide contains all the detailed information on how to apply for Erasmus+ funding. You will need to read both documents when planning an application.


Schools Online

25 September 2015 (British Council)

School's Online is the British Council's international learning programme for schools and teachers.

The programme helps to develop international education in your school by creating meaningful connections with educational institutions on a global scale.

Embedding international learning into your classroom also deepens students' understanding and respect for the world around them.

By registering with Schools Online you will gain access to classroom resources, professional development courses and form relationships with schools across the world.

Visit the British Council's Schools Online website for more information.


European Language Gazette 26 - June 2015

22 June 2015 (ECML)

The European Language Gazette, the ECML's e-newsletter, provides up-to-date news about the ECML (events, projects, resources), the Language Policy Unit and other relevant sectors of the Council of Europe, as well as our partners. It focuses on national developments in the field of language education in the member states and beyond.


Going Global 2015 highlights

2 June 2015 (British Council)

More than 1,200 leaders in higher education, business and government attended the British Council’s annual Going Global conference, which took place in London on Monday 1 and Tuesday 2 June 2015. Over 80 countries were represented by delegates, including 125 university presidents, vice-chancellors, pro vice-chancellors, and government ministers.

The British Council has invited Media FHE to deliver daily Briefing Reports from the conference, providing easy to digest summaries of news, research findings, and key points arising from the event.


Learners International - new resource for schools!

28 May 2015 (British Council/Education Scotland)

British Council in partnership with Education Scotland has today launched a new online resource to help schools and pre-school centres improve outcomes for pupils and staff through international engagement.

The resource is designed to support schools in their journey of continuous improvement in learning through partnerships with educational establishments in other countries.  Working in partnership the aim is to develop learners' skills and attitudes that are necessary to participate effectively in a globalised world.

International engagement involves learning about other countries:

  • their cultures
  • education systems
  • languages
  • the global themes of interest to us all
  • and by forming a partnership with educational establishments abroad and/or being involved in global learning programmes

The aim of the partnerships are:

  • to improve knowledge and skills across curriculum areas
  • to challenge stereotypes and prejudices
  • and to make learners aware of the possibilities that exist for learning and work outside Scotland

This, by extension, allows learners to understand Scotland and its place in the world. Partnerships allow those involved the opportunity to share ideas in pedagogy and the space to reflect on their own practice; and in so doing, improve the quality of learning and teaching. Partnerships can be developed digitally or can also involve face to face meetings between staff and/or learners.

Find out more about Learners International on the Education Scotland website.


World Class: how global thinking can improve your school

29 April 2015 (British Council)

Over recent years there have been a large number of studies conducted on the impact of international education work in UK schools. We have analysed these findings and drawn together the key benefits of implementing international education in primary, secondary and special educational needs schools in England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales. Download today and see how international programmes have been proven to improve literacy and learning, help teachers’ professional development and meet inspection requirements.


Secondary school writing competition

16 April 2015 (British Council)

British Council Scotland and Education Scotland are pleased to announce a writing competition for secondary schools in Scotland! We would like to ask you to encourage your secondary school pupils to submit short essays to highlight how international their school is, or how international could it be.

Examples of things pupils could write about are:

  • how their language learning experience allows them to think more internationally or opens international opportunities 
  • what they have learned about other countries and how that changed their perception of the world 
  • what other international activities already exist in their school such as school exchanges or school links with schools abroad 
  • what international activities they would like to see happening in their school in the future

Competition overview

Topic of the short essay: ‘How international is your school and how International could it be? Please write about how international experience has shaped or could shape your time at school.’
Word limit: 300 words maximum, 280 words minimum (the title is included in the word count)
How to enter: Pupils have to submit their work in PDF format by midnight on Monday 25 May 2015 to Natasha Kozlowska at stating the subject as ‘Writing entry’. Entries must be submitted with your name and your school.
Deadline: Midnight on Monday 25 May 2015
Prizes: The prize for the winning pupil is an iPad and a certificate signed by Education Scotland. The winning work will also be published on the Education Scotland website, and the winner will be invited to an awards ceremony to present their work. The prize for the school is a framed certificate signed by Education Scotland, presented during an event celebrating Scotland’s international links.

Please see the attached document for further information about the competition, which can be found be also found on the British Council website.


Scotland's International Framework

25 March 2015 (Scottish Government)

Scotland's International Framework sets out our internationalisation agenda and objectives, setting the context for delivery. It outlines our ambition for Scotland, its people, businesses and institutions through four strategic international objectives: enhancing our global outlook, strengthening our relationships and partnerships, increasing our reputation and attractiveness, and engaging with the European Union.

The document can be downloaded from the Scottish Government website.


Bring back overseas exchange trips, schools urged

18 November 2014 (BBC News)

Overseas exchange trips, once a rite of passage for teenagers, are now offered by a minority of schools, suggests research.

As late as the 1990s the "vast majority" of pupils were offered the chance to stay with a foreign pen-pal, says the British Council. Now only 39% of 450 schools surveyed in Britain offer this type of exchange.

Reviving these trips is vital to "tackle a national language crisis", argues the organisation.  It has launched a campaign urging schools to bring back the trips, saying they not only boost language learning but give pupils a taste of life abroad.


Related Links

Foreign exchange trips are becoming passé for UK schoolchildren (The Independent, 18 November 2014)

Health and safety fears 'killing off foreign exchange trips' (The Telegraph, 18 November 2014)

Schools bid adieu to foreign exchange trips (TES, 18 November 2014)

British Council says ‘bring back school exchanges’ (British Council, 18 November 2014)

International Education Week - Why school exchanges? (UK-German Connection, 19 November 2014)  International Education Week is an opportunity to encourage the importance of creating and maintaining an international dimension in the education of young people in the UK at both primary and secondary level. To celebrate, we have put together some top tips for teachers on organising trips, young people's perspectives on international exchanges and common myths debunked.

Drive to revive exchange trips and boost language learning (The Herald, 19 November 2014)

What I learned on my foreign exchange (The Telegraph, 20 November 2014)  As a new campaign is launched to revive foreign exchange trips, Telegraph writers recall their childhood experiences living with a host family.

Why I never went on school foreign exchanges - by a foreign correspondent (The Telegraph, 20 November 2014)

Zut alors! Is the exchange trip over? (TES, 21 November 2014)

International Education Week (IEW) 2014

24 October 2014 (British Council)

International Education Week (IEW) is an opportunity to promote the importance of building an international dimension into the education of young people in the UK at primary and secondary levels. We know that familiarity with other cultures and modern foreign languages skills are an essential part of preparing young people to work in the increasingly globalised economy.

In 2014 International Education Week (17 - 21 November) is promoting the importance of international experience for young people in the UK. The British Council provides a number of opportunities which can start young people off on their international journey.

Find out how your school can get involved at the British Council website.


Free classroom resources for international learning

23 January 2014 (British Council)

Bring the world into your classroom.  Our new guide to international learning gives you easy access to our projects, resources and professional development courses. Whatever your current level of experience, we have a wealth of opportunities to suit you. From setting up a partnership, to running a project and achieving the International School Award, there is plenty to explore as you embark on your journey with us.

British Council Connecting Classrooms also offer grants of up to £1,500 for partnerships between schools in the UK and other countries.  Applications are currently open until 31 January 2014.


How international teacher exchanges can refresh a whole school

22 January 2014 (TES)

A teaching career can get locked into repetitive cycles: as another year starts, the same old textbooks, jargon and exams loom yet again. Some things get done simply because they’ve always been done.

Hosting a teacher from foreign climes can jolt you out of that deadening loop. Philippa Seago, who takes charge of psychology at Littleover Community School in Derby, England, saw for herself how a school might benefit.


Related Links

Teacher Exchange Programme (TES, 22 January 2014)

Become a British Council Ambassador

2 December 2013 (British Council)

Becoming an Ambassador is the sixth stage in the British Council’s guide to international learning.

At the British Council we believe that the best-placed people to convince teachers of the value of engaging classrooms in international work are teachers who have this experience and have seen the impact this can have on students.

Everything we create to support teachers in their international adventure is developed in partnership with educators and educational consultants. And we like to tap into the enormous bank of expertise that our participating teachers have developed. If you have progressed through the various steps of the international learning journey we want to hear from you. Apply by 6 January 2014.


International Schools Award

21 November 2013 (British Council)

The British Council International School Award supports your school in embedding international learning into the curriculum. Taking part in the award links your school with others around the world, teaches your pupils about other countries and cultures, provides an internationally recognised accreditation for your school’s international work and enhances teaching standards through sharing best practice from other countries. With three entry points, you can access the Award at the level which best suits your school’s existing international work. The good news is that if you have an existing partnership with a school overseas, you can apply directly for the Intermediate Certificate or Accreditation. We are currently accepting Action Plans for the 2013/14 academic year (final deadline 13 December 2013). Visit the website for further information.


Vacancy: Development Officer – International Engagement

21 November 2013 (Education Scotland/British Council)

Education Scotland and British Council Scotland are currently looking for a Development Officer on a secondment basis. Candidates should possess a degree-level qualification in teaching (or equivalent), experience of working in an international education context (including school-based programmes such as e-twinning), partnership working and delivering Curriculum for Excellence in a classroom setting. Please visit the Education Scotland vacancy webpage for further information and application details.


International Education Week: 18-24 November 2013

20 August 2013 (British Council)

International Education Week (IEW) is an opportunity to promote the importance of building an international dimension into the education of young people in the UK at primary and secondary levels. We know that familiarity with other cultures and modern foreign languages skills are an essential part of preparing young people to work in the increasingly globalised economy.

The British Council is an authoritative voice on language learning, through our English teaching around the world, and we bring an intercultural dimension to foreign language learning in the UK through sharing our experiences, providing research and data and bringing in examples of international best practice.

This year IEW will support a major policy shift in UK schools. From September 2014 primary schools in England will be required to teach a foreign language to pupils at Key Stage 2 (upper primary). There is also increasing policy support in other UK countries for language learning at primary level.

International Education Week will form the starting point of a longer-term campaign to promote language learning in UK schools, with events taking place throughout the academic year.


Pisa's tests could get curiouser and curiouser

21 June 2013 (TES)

Tests in foreign language skills and creativity are being planned for the world’s most influential international education league tables, TES can reveal.

The Programme for International Student Assessment (Pisa), which plays an increasingly important role in many countries’ education policies, is expanding to rank students’ ability to cope with globalisation and immigration.


Students go abroad to immerse themselves in a new culture

14 May 2013 (The Guardian)

UK universities are setting up campuses overseas to meet international demand, but studying on a foreign campus also has many benefits for UK students.


International success depends on collaboration, not just competition

28 January 2013 (The Guardian)

For institutions that value student experience and its impact on employability in a global market, internationalisation means more than overseas recruitment.
... This also means that providers should think twice before reducing language provision. Students able to speak different languages and understand different cultures will continue to be in demand and will find it easier to do business with those who don't speak English.


A year of solitude: My year abroad in Colombia

25 January 2013 (The Independent)

Thinking of spending your university placement outside of Europe? Take up the challenge and venture further afield; there's a whole world to be found out there.


International School Awards

17 January 2013 (British Council)

Do you want international recognition for your school? Do you want to learn more about schools in other countries and be at the forefront of cultural exchanges among young people? If so, then you could bid for an International School Award (ISA) under the Connecting Classrooms programme.


Overseas study is good for business

13 January 2013 (The Independent)

Lack of opportunity, cash and ambition stops our students learning abroad.


Why global awareness matters to schools

5 November 2012 (Guardian)

Schools are increasingly finding ways to help students develop as global citizens. But can we do more to incorporate global issues into the curriculum?

... The vast majority of businesses believe schools should help young people to think more globally and four out of every five believe schools should be doing more. Significantly, twice as many business leaders rate knowledge and awareness of the wider world as an important skill as ability to speak a foreign language. While they still regard language skills as important it is the 'soft' skills of cultural awareness and understanding global issues that are particularly valued.


World Class – BBC’s international project for schools

10 October 2012 (BBC)

Join the BBC's World Class to celebrate International Education Week during the week of 12-16 November.

International Education Week (IEW) is a British Council initiative giving schools a chance to learn more about education around the world, and to celebrate their own international links and partnerships. For IEW week in 2012, the main theme is entitled 'Use your Voice'. During the week, World Class will be hosting a series of live, interactive debates, in which pupils from across the world can offer their opinions on a range of topics. Email to book into a live debate.


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