Kannada to be mandatory in state schools

Harold F. Schiffman haroldfs at ccat.sas.upenn.edu
Thu Aug 31 13:46:37 UTC 2006

Kannada policy

Mathang Seshagiri
[ 30 Aug, 2006 0009hrs ISTTIMES NEWS NETWORK ]

BANGALORE: In a major rejig of the language policy, the Karnataka
government is amending rules to make it mandatory for students from
outside Karnataka/India to study 'conversational Kannada' as one of the
subjects in state schools. This will be of the Class 2 or 3 level between
Class 6 and 10. The rule will come into effect from the next academic
year. The primary and secondary education department has readied a cabinet
note spelling out the language policy for outsiders and state students.

As per the new rules, 15 grace marks will be given to students studying
conversational Kannada to help them pass, but will not be considered for
determining the grade. Students, who have already been allowed to study
Alternate English by the deputy directors of public instruction this year
will be allowed to study the same subject till they pass Class 10. But the
proposed rules do not exempt state students, who shift from CBSE/ICSE or
Army schools to state schools, from studying Kannada. From next year, such
students have to compulsorily study Kannada as one of the three languages.

It also stalled the government's directive to Karnataka Secondary
Education Examination Board from conducting Alternate English exam for
students in lieu of Kannada. "I am of the view that students from
Karnataka should mandatorily study Kannada. If our state students are not
interested in studying Kannada, who will? Any exemption that needs to be
given should be limited only to students joining state schools from other
states or abroad," primary and secondary education minister Basavaraj
Horatti told The Times of India.

Another significant proposal before the state cabinet is to totally exempt
students coming from other states and NRIs from studying Kannada as a
compulsory language in Class 8, 9 and 10 and instead allow them to pursue
Alternate English. "States like Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu have exempted
nonstate students joining state schools from studying Marathi and Tamil
respectively. We are seeking cabinet consent whether Karnataka too can
grant such exemption to outside students," sources said.

The Karnataka High Court on August 10 had stayed the government order
which made it mandatory for Class 8, 9, 10 students migrating from other
states and from CBSE/ICSE schools to state syllabus to study Kannada as
one of the languages.



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