Schools (Foreign Languages)

Part of the debate – in the Scottish Parliament at on 29 February 2024.

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Photo of Jenny Gilruth Jenny Gilruth Scottish National Party

The member is correct to raise Brexit in that context. The Government remains committed to addressing one of the most damaging consequences of Brexit for schools, universities and colleges—the fact that United Kingdom students can no longer take part in the Erasmus+ programme. The Erasmus+ programme had a major impact on higher and further education in Scotland, with proportionately more students from Scotland taking part in Erasmus than from any other country in the UK, and proportionately more European Union students coming to Scotland on Erasmus than to anywhere else in the UK.

At school level, Erasmus+ was used primarily to support staff mobility and virtual exchanges between schools, as well as some school trips. In 2023-24, the Government is funding a test and learn programme to re-establish some of the opportunities that Erasmus+ provided, but which the UK Government’s Turing scheme does not.