[lg policy] South Africa: African language policy to be introduced next year

Harold Schiffman hfsclpp at gmail.com
Wed Jun 17 15:08:53 UTC 2015

 African language policy to be introduced next year
[image: Bulelwa Dayimani] By Bulelwa Dayimani
<http://www.destinyconnect.com/author/bulelwa-dayimani/> June 17, 2015
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[image: Shape Msiza won the top Gauteng teacher award in 2012.(Photo by
Gallo)]Shape Msiza won the top Gauteng teacher award in 2012.(Photo by

As part of a new African languages policy by the Department of Basic
Education, South African schools will now be offering African languages as
part of the curriculum

>From 2016, the Department of Education will make it compulsory for all SA
schools to offer one African language as part of their school curriculum.
The aim is to improve and expand the teaching of African languages, enhance
learning and promote social cohesion.

“Currently, the National Curriculum Statement requires schools to offer two
languages, one as a language of learning and teaching, and the other as an
additional language. One of the two languages should be offered at Home
Language level, and the other at either Home Language or First Additional
Language (FAL) level,” the department said in a statement.

The department says that of the 25 000 schools, only 3 700 don’t offer
African languages as part of their curriculum, and those schools will now
do so.

“We’ve done our homework, [being] particularly conscious of the importance
of languages and communication in promoting social cohesion and
nation-building. An investigation was conducted to determine properly how
this should be done.”

Based on a Global Monitoring Report, which discovered that the choice of
language of instruction and language policy played a vital role in
effective learning, the department found it necessary to introduce African
languages to the curriculum.

“The Incremental Introduction of African Languages policy intends to
promote and develop the previously marginalised languages.

“We hope this will raise confidence of parents to choose their own
languages as languages for learning and teaching. We believe, also, that
the policy will increase access to languages by all learners, beyond
English and Afrikaans.”

The department, however, admits that more teachers will be needed to teach
the African languages.

“Four provinces (Free State, Limpopo, Northern Cape and KwaZulu-Natal) have
provided African language teachers in all former Model-C schools, two
provinces (Mpumalanga and Gauteng) have teachers in some schools, the
Eastern Cape and North West have put plans in place to provide the teachers
for African languages, in the Western Cape, schools share an African
language teacher.”

The Department of Basic Education will be working to provide more qualified
teachers for African languages in all provinces.

“However, the post provisioning norm to promote African languages will
differ from one province to the other. It would be simpler in provinces
with few official languages and more complex in those with more official


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