Posts tagged language

A joint meeting of the Portfolio Committee on Basic Education and the Portfolio Committee on Higher Education and Training has welcomed the plan by the Department of Basic Education to incrementally implement the use of African languages in all South African schools.
According to the Department of Basic Education, the programme will be implemented as from 2014 for Grade R and Grade 1. This will incrementally increase to include Grade 12 by 2025. The language selection for First Additional Language (FAL) would be Xitsonga, any Nguni language, a Sotho language, Tshivenda or Afrikaans. (via Parliament welcomes use of African languages in all schools (English))

A joint meeting of the Portfolio Committee on Basic Education and the Portfolio Committee on Higher Education and Training has welcomed the plan by the Department of Basic Education to incrementally implement the use of African languages in all South African schools.

According to the Department of Basic Education, the programme will be implemented as from 2014 for Grade R and Grade 1. This will incrementally increase to include Grade 12 by 2025. The language selection for First Additional Language (FAL) would be Xitsonga, any Nguni language, a Sotho language, Tshivenda or Afrikaans. (via Parliament welcomes use of African languages in all schools (English))

WUHAN - A campaign is afoot in Chinese schools to improve children’s literacy, as educators have warned that young people are increasingly having problems writing and reading Chinese due to their extensive use of electronic devices, as well as a lack of attention paid to traditional culture.
Twenty students at Tokyo University of Foreign Studies have produced a multi-lingual website about areas hit by the Great East Japan Earthquake.
The site, called Tohoku10×26windows, gives information on the activities of 10 groups based in Iwate, Miyagi and Fukushima prefectures and offers translations into 22 languages, including English, German, Vietnamese and Polish. Pages in Czech, Burmese, Urdu and Arabic are in the pipeline, which will bring the total languages to the title’s “26 windows.”
“We aim to transmit the news directly from the disaster areas to the world,” said one student involved in the project. (via Students offer info about post-quake efforts in 22 languages - AJW by The Asahi Shimbun)

Twenty students at Tokyo University of Foreign Studies have produced a multi-lingual website about areas hit by the Great East Japan Earthquake.

The site, called Tohoku10×26windows, gives information on the activities of 10 groups based in Iwate, Miyagi and Fukushima prefectures and offers translations into 22 languages, including English, German, Vietnamese and Polish. Pages in Czech, Burmese, Urdu and Arabic are in the pipeline, which will bring the total languages to the title’s “26 windows.”

“We aim to transmit the news directly from the disaster areas to the world,” said one student involved in the project. (via Students offer info about post-quake efforts in 22 languages - AJW by The Asahi Shimbun)

Less than a year after France’s education minister, Luc Chatel, kicked off a national campaign to improve foreign language skills, the country’s national distance learning institute, Cned, has launched a free website for English learners, backed by $4m of government funding.
The Thai government has embarked on an ambitious nationwide programme to teach English at least once a week in all state schools as part of the new 2012 English Speaking Year project.
The initiative is intended to ease Thailand’s entry into the Asean community in 2015, when southeast Asia becomes one economic zone and a universal language is required for communication and business.
The project will focus on speaking English rather than studying its grammar, with teachers provided training through media modules and partnerships with foreign institutions, including English-language schools, according to Thailand’s education ministry. (via Thai schools urged to boost speaking | Education | Guardian Weekly)

The Thai government has embarked on an ambitious nationwide programme to teach English at least once a week in all state schools as part of the new 2012 English Speaking Year project.

The initiative is intended to ease Thailand’s entry into the Asean community in 2015, when southeast Asia becomes one economic zone and a universal language is required for communication and business.

The project will focus on speaking English rather than studying its grammar, with teachers provided training through media modules and partnerships with foreign institutions, including English-language schools, according to Thailand’s education ministry. (via Thai schools urged to boost speaking | Education | Guardian Weekly)

Uganda will introduce Kiswahili as a compulsory subject in primary and secondary schools this year as a way of integrating fully with the other EAC partner states.

Uganda joins Rwanda in the list of regional countries seeking to boost their language use as they seek opportunities in the integrated EAC where English and Swahili are the main languages of communication.

Since Romania and Bulgaria’s accession to the EU, more and more Roma have flocked to Germany, many of whom send their children to school without any knowledge of the language, the Berliner Umschau states.

The teachers at the Hermann Schulz primary school in Berlin-Reinickendorf have sent a letter to the authorities to complain about the matter.

In one of the classes at the school, 20% of the children are Roma with no knowledge of German.

The teachers have complained that they are no longer capable of catering to the needs of the entire classes and are finding it impossible to teach the curriculum.

English has been the medium of instruction in most of Namibia’s classrooms for nearly 20 years, but with teachers shown to be failing in competency tests, calls for change are mounting (via Namibia’s language policy is ‘poisoning’ its children | Education | Guardian Weekly)

English has been the medium of instruction in most of Namibia’s classrooms for nearly 20 years, but with teachers shown to be failing in competency tests, calls for change are mounting (via Namibia’s language policy is ‘poisoning’ its children | Education | Guardian Weekly)

[VIETNAM] For more than a decade, Nguyen Thi Quyen’s ethnic minority students in Lao Chai village primary school would stare at her blankly, unable to respond to her questions. As the school year wore on, they dropped out to tend farm animals or hawk knick-knacks to the tourists.


Quyen was teaching in Vietnamese, the language of the majority Kinh, but ethnic minorities in the country’s northern hills speak Mong […] With Vietnamese the official language for education, school remains inaccessible for many ethnic minorities, who comprise 13 percent of the population and are among the country’s most impoverished.

In an educational revolution of sorts, a growing number of Israeli schools are taking a novel approach to the instruction of Arabic: They’re hiring Arab teachers.


The initiative is about far more than teaching children a new language. Educators say they hope to break down barriers in a society where Jewish and Arab citizens have little day-to-day interaction and often view each other with suspicion.