The student news site of C. Milton Wright High School

The Pony Express

  • June 5Don't forget to turn in your library books.
  • June 5Five Days Until Summer Break!
The student news site of C. Milton Wright High School

The Pony Express

The student news site of C. Milton Wright High School

The Pony Express

Should Schools Make Taking Language Classes Mandatory?

An Argument Against Learning Foreign Languages

You have heard the importance of learning a foreign language, but does that mean everyone should learn a different language? Not really, but let me tell you why. As someone who has taken two language classes, here are 5 reasons why taking language classes should not be mandatory in schools. 


The first reason is because there are too many choices. There are approximately 7,151 known speaking languages in the world today, 33 different tongues that have at least 50 million different speakers. So which language should you consider? Many people would argue that English is the global language, but that wouldn’t be a valid argument because only 17% of the world’s population speaks English, so the other 83% of the world that doesn’t speak English wouldn’t agree. People would mostly choose a famous European tongue like Spanish, French or German. The Chinese language is in demand, so that could be a good option, but that leads into my next reason. 


Next up is the fact that learning a new language is difficult. If you took a language class, think about your performance in that class. How did you do in that class? Was the class easy or was it pretty challenging? Many linguists want you to develop an optimistic mindset in order to learn a foreign language more comfortably. But the fact is that no foreign language is easy to understand. Many language students struggle with vocabulary, grammar, tones and dialects.  


Another reason is a lack of interest and motivation. Being motivated and interested are essential with learning a new language, but most people don’t have a passion for it. Although it may seem strange, the fact is that you can do a task only if you are interested in it. If you don’t have a passion for languages, you won’t have a passion for learning another language for a long time. And there’s so much more you could be doing instead of wasting numerous hours learning a language that could have little to no benefit in your life. With all the people that have learned, or are learning a foreign language, 99.5% of people fail doing so, also learning a language might not line up with a student’s interests or goals for the classes they want to take, so instead of taking a class that they would be interested in, they have to take a language class that they don’t want to take. 


Plus, learning a new language takes a long time. In a study conducted on young people learning English as a second language at school, basic conversational skills were achieved in one year, speaking skills in 3-5 years, and advanced academic skills in 4-7 years. The time it takes to learn a language also depends a lot on your goals. Learning a new language takes time, and thinking learning a new language won’t take as long as it does is one of the main reasons for language learning failure. There’s a lot of clickbait selling language courses that say they can teach you a new language in just a couple months, but it seems to never be the case. 


My fifth and final reason why schools should not make taking a language class mandatory is that there’s no time to study. Is it possible to achieve in any task without dedicating the right amount of time? Nope. That’s just one reason why you shouldn’t even bother taking a language class. Say you are a student who plays a sport or has a different hobby, like playing an instrument, that you are very passionate about, or maybe a student who works part-time at a job. Now, experts say you should study for about an hour a day to learn a language. Do you really think that students have enough time to work or play sports, study and do homework for other classes, while on top of that, study for an hour a day to learn a language they may or may not want to even learn? Especially with a language learning failure rate of 95%? There’s no point; it’s just a waste of time.  

In conclusion, remember that the body and mind have a limit to how much stress they can handle. If you are confident and determined, you should definitely learn the language that you want too. But if you know that you don’t have enough time to learn a foreign language, then don’t.  





Leave a Comment
More to Discover

Comments (0)

All The Pony Express Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *