Minister reaffirms commitment to Hebrew after meeting with Board

The Board welcomed the Government’s re-affirmed commitment to secure the Hebrew qualifications at a meeting with Schools Minister Nick Gibb this week.

After the meeting, Mr  Gibb said: “We are committed to working with the exam boards to ensure that qualifications in minority languages such as Hebrew continue. We welcome the work of the Board of Deputies in drawing attention to this important issue.”

Board Chief Executive Gillian Merron, who led the delegation, said: “We found the minister very engaged and constructive on the issues we raised. Protecting the teaching of Hebrew in schools is a clear priority for us – and it was good to hear that the Government shares our view.”

In September, the OCR and AQA exam boards warned that they might drop Hebrew at GCSE and A-Level.

Since that time, the Board has been engaging with the Government, parliamentarians and the exam boards themselves to ensure that the languages are protected.

It was one of the issues highlighted in the Board’s Jewish Manifesto for the General Election. During the General Election, Education Secretary Nicky Morgan pledged to protect Hebrew and other heritage languages.

Last month, Education Minister Nick Gibb reaffirmed that the Government would step in to protect community languages.

The meeting was also an opportunity to reflect the community’s interests ahead of a review of the Admissions Code and discuss the challenge of extremism in schools.

The Board was represented at the meeting by Chief Executive Gillian Merron, Public Affairs DiCr Phil Rosenberg and Education Policy Manager Sara Perlmutter.

Photo: Board Education and Policy Manager Sara Perlmutter, Board Public Affairs Director Phil Rosenberg, Department for Education Minister Nick Gibb and Board Chief Executive Gillian Merron, at this week’s meeting

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