Ministry urged to enforce schools language policy
THE Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education has been urged to enforce the country’s language policy in schools as articulated in the Constitution so that children are taught in their mother tongue.
This is contained in a report on the review of the Education Act prepared by a technical committee to an Inter-Ministerial Task-Force (IMT) that was presented at a two-day stakeholder consultative workshop on the draft Education Amendment Bill.
Members of the IMT technical committee and senior officials from the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education participated in the workshop to amend the Education Act.
The committee said it was important for children to be taught in their mother tongue. It recommended that there should be no discrimination in respect of official languages.
“The constitution states that the principles of good governance, which bind the state and all institutions and agencies of the Government at every level, include the fostering of national unity peace and stability, with due regard to diversity of languages, customary practices and traditions,” the report said.
“There are 16 languages that are officially recognised in Zimbabwe. Further, every person has the right to use a language of their choice.”
The report says research has shown that when a child’s first language is used for learning throughout primary school, they are more likely to succeed in school.
“The learning needs of children must be satisfied, taking into account the culture, needs and opportunities of their communities. Accordingly, section 62 of the current Act should be amended to reflect the importance of Zimbabwe’s official languages,” reads the report.— @pamelashumba1