Developing language skills for the world of work

Employers and schools need to develop strong two way partnerships – partnerships that deliver improvements to teaching and learning and bring real-life context into the classroom.
Developing the Young Workforce (Scottish Government, 2014)

Business Language Champions: Developing language skills for the world of work

The Scottish Government’s ambitious 1+2 Languages Policy arrives at a time when globally the demand for language skills is expanding. The Business Language Champions (BLC) scheme helps schools and businesses to build partnerships through languages in order to support teachers in developing young people’s learning about the world of work and their understanding of the value of language skills to their future employability.

The Case Studies present replicable ideas for projects in your own school. These projects build a partnership between the school and a local business and enable the school to deliver on Developing the Young Workforce and the National Improvement Framework, as well as build crucial partnerships outlined in HGIOS 4

Please see our Get Involved tab for guidance on building your own partnership with business, through languages, to equip young people with the skills and knowledge they need to flourish in the workplace.

For more information on the skills employers need, including language skills, please download the most recent CBI survey - Inspiring growth: CBI Education and Skills Survey 2015.

For more information on the number of pupils studying languages at secondary schools in Scotland, please read SCILT's Language Trends in Scotland (2017).

How the Business Language Champions scheme can help

The Business Language Champions scheme helps schools and businesses to build partnerships through languages to develop young people’s learning about the world of work. The programme helps businesses to to deliver on Developing the Young Workforce:

  • Play an active role in shaping and benefiting from the education system at a local level, with a particular focus on languages
  • Prepare young people for the world of work and help them to move successfully into the workforce
  • Promote a positive awareness of your business in the community
  • Gain fresh perspectives from young people
  • Develop corporate social responsibility activities in an innovative way
  • Harness and develop employees’ language skills
  • Raise awareness of the importance of languages for our economy
How to become a Business Language Champion

Here are just some of the activities that we could help you organise to inspire language learners in your area:

  • Talks to schools about how languages are important to your business
  • Student and teacher visits to your company to see languages in action
  • Provision of language mentors to support students in a local school or schools
  • Development of business projects for students in target languages
  • Visits to company premises in Scotland
  • Access to company resources and documents in target languages
For more information on the skills employers need, including language skills, please download the most recent CBI survey - Inspiring growth: CBI Education and Skills Survey 2015

For more information on the number of pupils studying languages at secondary schools in Scotland, please read SCILT's Language Trends in Scotland (2017).

How the Business Language Champions scheme can help

The Business Language Champions scheme helps schools and businesses to build partnerships through languages to equip young people with skills for life and work. The programme helps schools to deliver on Developing the Young Workforce as well as build crucial partnerships from HGIOS 4:

  • Bring the relevance of languages in the workplace to life
  • Raise learners’ awareness of the types of jobs that require languages
  • Inspire and motivate learners to raise numbers of pupils taking languages
  • Make learners aware of how employable they are
  • Help schools develop opportunities for authentic interdisciplinary learning
  • Foster links with the local business community
How does our school become involved in the Business Language Champions scheme?
It doesn’t have to be complicated or too time-consuming for busy staff in schools! 
Here are just a few of the motivating and exciting activities that we could help to organise to inspire your language learners:
  • Employee visits to schools
  • Learner and teacher visits to local employers to see languages in action
  • Develop business projects for the classroom
  • Work in collaboration with other subject areas to plan joint activities 
  • Advising on resources to support the delivery of projects

Look at our Case Studies tab above for ideas of projects that could be replicated in your own school.

Education Scotland has produced some guidance for schools on building school-employer partnerships.

Get involved

Business Language Champions builds partnerships between schools and local businesses to support teachers in developing young people’s learning about the world of work, with a particular focus on the relevance of language skills.

Replicable ideas for projects can be found through the Case Studies tab above.

Education Scotland has produced some guidance for schools on building school-employer partnerships.

For further information and to request support to set up a partnership, please contact SCILT.

Download our BLC leaflet for schools (PDF).

Download our BLC leaflet for businesses (PDF).

  • Case studies
  • Information for businesses
  • Information for schools
  • Get involved

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