Some predict that Classics will be a dead subject in state schools within a decade, while last year the number of students embarking on a Classics degree dropped to just 868.
Teacher Lorna Robinson has launched an initiative called the 'Iris Project' to try to revive the teaching of Latin and Greek in the state sector. But what is the relevance of Classics at the start of the twenty first century? Are Latin and Greek “dead languages from a dead culture”, as one commentator described them? Or is teaching Classics the key to improving children’s language skills and understanding of our cultural roots?
Martha is joined by Lorna Robinson, founder of the 'Iris Project', and by journalist Matthew Engel. She also hears from staff and pupils at Haydon School, a comprehensive in West London, which introduced Latin to the curriculum only a few years ago.