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OCR has confirmed it will be withdrawing from the provision of GCSEs and A Levels in the 'less taught' languages of Persian, Turkish, Portuguese, Dutch, Gujarati and Biblical Hebrew, for strategic reasons. However, the Department for Education has gained agreements in principle from Pearson to provide Turkish, Portuguese and Gujarati GCSEs and A Levels, as well as Biblical Hebrew GCSE, and from AQA to provide Biblical Hebrew A Level, subject to the outcome of discussions on subject content.
In the interests of ensuring continuity of service, OCR will be extending its provision by one additional year in these subjects with last examinations taking place in summer 2019. The last examinations in Dutch and Persian will take place in summer 2018.
OCR's Chief Executive William Burton said: "We are delighted that some of these 'less taught' languages will continue to be provided. It was not an easy decision to stop offering them and is something we have thought long and hard about.
"I am grateful to the other exam boards for agreeing in principle to ensure continuity and we will do all that we can to ensure a smooth handover of work in progress, existing Intellectual Property Rights and, after consultation, names of schools and examiners that wish to continue.
"It remains a matter of regret that no board was in a position to take on Dutch or Persian. OCR will continue to offer a very broad range of qualifications."
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