Doubts there are enough teachers to make second language bill work

Author
Newstalk ZB ,
Section
Audio,
Publish Date
Tuesday, 11 December 2018, 9:16a.m.
An education lecturer says that there is evidence in support of teaching a second or third language. (Photo / File)

Teaching our children a second language could improve their educational performance and cultural understanding.

National MP Nikki Kaye has received cross-party backing for a private member's bill, promoting second language teaching from a young age.

The bill now has support from Education Minister Chris Hipkins, and every party except New Zealand First.

Auckland University's Peter O'Connor told Kate Hawkesby there are good reasons for introducing language classes in primary schools.

"Any language is better than none. The evidence is clear that if you learn a second language you do better, your first language is strengthened."

But he says it's going to take time and money to find the language teachers, and train them.

"We have a rather big problem at the moment of not having any teachers to teach. Where we're going to find the teachers to teach this is a huge problem for any Government."

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