COI seeks ad agency to promote education

The Department for Children, Schools and Families has called a pitch for a brief to boost the number of young people studying foreign languages, maths, technology, engineering and sciences.

The DCSF is planning to spend up to £4 million per year on TV, cinema and digital activity. It has been working with Naked for some months to develop a communications strategy and is now planning a campaign with strong online as well as offline elements.

The pitch, which is being handled through COI, will pair ad and digital agencies. Presentations will take place before the end of this month.

Agencies invited to tender are understood to include Delaney Lund Knox Warren & Partners, glue London, Mother, Lowe and Profero.

In the Queen's Speech on Tuesday, the Government confirmed plans to require all young people between the ages of 16 and 18 to remain in education or training by the year 2015.

Figures obtained by the Liberal Democrats earlier in the week found that while 83 per cent of pupils took a French, German or Spanish GCSE in 2000, less than 50 per cent did so this year.

The drop in numbers follows a move in 2004 that made modern languages optional rather than compulsory for pupils over 14 years old.