[lg policy] Zambia: Linguistics expert sad with schools’ continued English language use

Harold Schiffman hfsclpp at gmail.com
Thu Sep 17 14:37:06 UTC 2015

 Linguistics expert sad with schools’ continued English language use

Posted in Gender <https://www.daily-mail.co.zm/?cat=75>, Gender
<https://www.daily-mail.co.zm/?cat=87> on September 16, 2015 by Online User
[image: ZambiaSt.MarcellinsHighSchool-04_1]

DESPITE overwhelming evidence of the positive impact of using mother tongue
as the preferred language of instruction for primary school learners, many
African countries continue to use the colonial language as the primary
language for teaching and governance.

University of South Australia (USA) associate Professor in applied
linguistics Kathleen Heugh said this in statement issued recently.

Prof Heugh said “These languages are not even the second language for most

She said this when she presented a United Nations Educational, Scientific
and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) report co-edited by Christine Glanz in a
session hosted by Oxford University Press (OUP) at the combined 9th Pan
African Reading for All and the 10th Reading Association of South Africa
(RASA) conference recently.

The report, which followed UNESCO Education for All framework, analysed
language policy, implementation and practices in 25 African countries.
What emerged was a clear indication that a firm foundation in mother tongue
instruction, coupled with learning colonial language, is critical for
understanding new concepts and expressing what has been learned.

“The quality of education and the level of learning depend on the synergy
of the curriculum with the social and cultural environment. But the fact is
that African realities are still largely ignored in the development of
policies and curricula.” Prof Heugh said.

And a Ugandan based non-governmental organisation, Literacy and Adult Basic
Education (LABE) says Long periods of ‘colonialisation of the mind’ have
led people to believe that their home languages are worthless in education,
governance and legal matters.

LABE representative Godfrey Sentumbwe says “There are also hurdles to
putting research into practice.

“We have many good policies on paper but the implementation is poor because
the research on which the policies are based is inaccessible and
incomprehensible to a wider audience”.

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