Classics in Communities: Ancient Languages 2014 and Beyond

The University of Oxford’s Classics Faculty, the Iris Project, and Swansea University’s College of Arts and Humanities have announced an exciting new two-year project to promote the option of teaching Latin or Greek to primary schools throughout the UK.

The Classics in Communities project has been set up in response to the primary curriculum reforms being implemented in England in 2014, and will particularly target schools from deprived areas.

The opening conference of the project, ‘Classics in Communities: Theories and Practices to develop Classics Outreach in the 21stCentury’, will take place at Corpus Christi College, University of Oxford, on November 30, 2013. The keynote speaker is Professor Edith Hall, King’s College London.

Eight workshops will be given at HE institutions around the UK by people who work on Latin and Greek teaching, including:

  • Barbara Bell, Minimus
  • Dr Lorna Robinson, The Iris Project
  • Dr Evelien Bracke, Swansea University
  • Dr Aisha Khan-Evans, King’s College London
  • Dr Steve Hunt, University of Cambridge

The workshops will offer information about approaches, resources, and support, and practical sessions. The workshops will aim to bring together primary, secondary, and HE level teachers and allow for sustainable links to be created and developed.

The second phase will begin in July 2014 and focus on providing practical ongoing support for schools which decide to teach Latin or Greek:

  • Resources will be shared via the Joint Association of Classical Teachers (JACT) website
  • Pre-arranged video meetings and workshops will be set up
  • Mentoring will be available
  • Testing the impact of the language teaching on the pupils’ literacy skills and global awareness.

The project will end with a conference bringing together the findings from the project, and discussing how the project might move beyond the first year of the curriculum reforms.

Anyone who wishes to contact or to get involved with the project can do so through Facebook (search ‘Classics in Communities’); Twitter @ClassicsinCommunity; or by emailing Dr Evelien Bracke at Swansea University at

The project also now invites abstracts for papers for the one-day Opening Conference, which will take place at Corpus Christi College, University of Oxford, on November 30, 2013.

The project is grateful to Classics for All, SSAT, and Routes into Languages, for the advice and support they have provided in setting up the project. The Faculty of Classics, University of Oxford, has kindly provided funding to get the project off the ground, with further fundraising planned.