LAST week saw A level results published, and a three per cent fall in the number of sixth formers studying French, this week it's the turn of CGSE students to turn their backs on modern languages.
This year's results show that 11,000 fewer students took French GCSE this year, a drop of 5.9 per cent on 12 months ago, according to figures published by the Joint Council for Qualifications (JCQ).
Christine Blower, general secretary of the National Union of Teachers, said: "Yet again, of real concern is the decline in the study of modern foreign languages, particularly French and German.
"This was reflected in last week’s A level results. I find it extraordinary that French which has for so long been core to the secondary curriculum should now have dropped out of the top ten GCSEs taken by young people.
"I urge the Government to come up with a coherent policy for ensuring that all young people acquire at least one modern foreign language."
Much of the blame for the fall has been aimed at a decision by Labour to make languages optional for the first time in 2004, allowing thousands of pupils to drop the subjects at 14.
French is no longer in the top 10 of most popular subjects studied at GCSE level.