English to become a more common language of instruction in Austria

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English is to be offered more frequently as a language of instruction in schools. This option was enshrined in law around a year and a half ago. Education Minister Martin Polaschek (ÖVP) has now sent a draft regulation for review, in which details such as curricula are anchored.

The school experiments on the subject, which are currently only offered at a few institutions, will be transferred to the regular school system.

There will also be the option of bilingual teaching in primary schools. The measure will come into force for the first classes of the 2024–25 school year and subsequent classes in ascending order in the following year.

Level of the first language
Secondary schools and AHS should also be able to be run bilingually. In each case, the aim is for pupils to be supported in German and English or in the respective subject lessons to reach a first-language level in the initially weaker language. Here, too, the start is planned for the first classes in the 2024/25 school year, and additionally, in the fifth classes at the AHS – the remaining classes will follow in ascending order the following year.

The option of bilingual teaching will be available for the entire school and individual classes. The aim is for each of the 31 educational regions in Austria to have at least one secondary school in which English is predominantly the language of instruction in individual classes.

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