Warning Signs Are There For Britain’s Monolingual Kids

At Today Translations, we naturally place a lot of emphasis on the value and empowerment provided by rich linguistic skills. Having the resources in place for people and businesses from around the world to effectively communicate is one of the foundations for a globalised world that is becoming increasingly connected and intertwined.

It, therefore, comes as no surprise that a recent report in the London Evening Standard highlights the case that monolingual English-speakers are at risk of being at a serious disadvantage in the job market.

Senior linguistics lecturer at Queen Mary, University of London, Devyani Sharma has warned that children who only speak English will find themselves being increasingly “eclipsed by their Continental peers”. The warning follows the recent census data that 22.1 percent Londoners (roughly 1.7 million people) speak a mother-tongue other than English, with Polish being the most commonly spoken mother tongue, followed by Bengali and Gujarati.

Sharma told the Standard, “Multilingualism is excellent for job prospects. These London kids who are bilingually proficient could find a great advantage the more Britain looks to these regions for business partnerships. At the moment the situation is quite dire in Britain in terms of foreign language learning.”

Recently, we reported on the UK Department for Education’s findings that English school pupils were among the worst performers in regards to learning foreign languages. The report noted significance in the Labour government’s decision in 2004 to scrap compulsory foreign languages after the age of 14 in schools.

The world is becoming smaller and more intertwined, and people and businesses are communicating in different tongues on a regular basis. The advantages of knowing at least one foreign language are clearly becoming more and more palpable, not just professionally but also culturally.

So, let’s take this moment to toast the translators and interpreters who use their linguistic skills to help bring different nationalities and cultures closer together.

At Today Translations, the linguists that make up our global network should not just be revered for being multilingual, but also for their specialist knowledge that spans a range of sectors – from legal to information technology, medical to financial.

If you require translation services, you’re in good hands with a company that understands the value of language and has access to a network of the finest linguists. Get in touch with us at [email protected] for a free quote.

Image courtesy of Multilingual Kids