The Bilingual Education Programme 

Our Bilingual Education Programme (BEP) was launched in 1996 with the Ministry of Education to provide wider access to a bilingual and bicultural education for children across Spain.  Based on the education offered by the British Council School in Madrid, the programme now reaches 40,000 students in 90 Early Years / Primary schools and 58 Secondary schools in 10 Autonomous Regions.  

Curriculum and methodology

BEP methodology is characterised by a focus on literacy and on the development of linguistic, scientific and intercultural competencies in Spanish and English. At the heart of the BEP is the competency based Integrated Curriculum which combines content and approaches from Spanish and UK curricula. The Spanish Ministry of Education has published new Integrated Curriculum Guidelines for Early Years in line with the new education law in Spain (LOMLOE).  

Early Years

In Early Years children develop pre-literacy and essential literacy skills in both English and Spanish, learning to read, write and play in English using a phonics based approach. 


In Primary, children study Literacy, Natural Sciences, Social Sciences and Art in English to build their literacy skills, scientific knowledge and bicultural awareness. There is a focus on using authentic age-appropriate whole texts and on integrated project work across subject areas. 


In Secondary students continue to develop their confidence and competencies across the curriculum through English and Literacy, Biology, Chemistry, Physics, History and Geography.  Schools have the option of enrolling students in the annual IGCSE exams at the end of 4º ESO. 


Ongoing research and evaluation is necessary to measure the effectiveness and ensure the quality of the Programme.  We are working with Spanish universities on five main research projects which form our research agenda for 2021-2024.  Current  publications are available to download below as is our self-assessment tool for quality assurance for school leaders in bilingual and non-bilingual schools or our report outlining conclusions from the seminar "Inclusion and the right to learn a foreign language".   This is the first in our seminars in the "Four challenges in foreign language teaching", organised with the Instituto Cervantes in Spain. 

Teacher training

We offer courses and webinar programmes for Early Years, Primary and Secondary teachers to help BEP schools achieve the best learning outcomes for all of their students. Key themes over the past two years have been developing approaches to Literacy teaching, effective assessment practices and inclusive curriculum planning and teaching.  We also link up frequently with our Global Teacher Training programmes so that teachers in BEP and throughout Spain have access to as much quality teacher training as possible.  Take a look at BEP methodology webinars on our YouTube playlist.

See also

External links