OK, class! Repeat after me: Omnes Gallia in tres partes divisa est. . . .
The high school Latin teacher almost became an extinct species, but no more. ''Some schools are almost stealing Latin teachers from each other,'' says Dr. James A. Barthelmess, director of the National Coordinating Office for Latin and Greek. As head cheerleader for classical languages, the NCOLG has been so successful in pitching classics that there hasn't been time to round up enough teachers. Enrollment in Latin classes is up 20 percent nationally. Some 1,823 students took the Latin Achievement Test portion of the Scholastic Aptitude Tests for college entrance in 1981, as opposed to 1,570 a year earlier.
The surge in interest in Latin also can be traced to college SAT results: Verbal scores for Latin students average 144 points more than those for all others.