[lg policy] South Africa: Everyone wins with new language policy – Stellenbosch University

Harold Schiffman hfsclpp at gmail.com
Mon May 23 10:53:34 EDT 2016

 Everyone wins with new language policy – Stellenbosch University 2016-05-22

News24 Correspondent
[image: (iStock)]

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Cape Town – All Stellenbosch University students would be accommodated by
the institution’s revised language policies, it said on Sunday.

“One of the principles... accepted by a large majority of votes, was that
the English offering should be expanded so that no enrolled student would
be excluded from the academic offering,” the university in a statement.

It was referring to the outcome of a council meeting on Saturday.

“At the same time it should be ensured that the Afrikaans offering is not
decreased, and that Afrikaans as language of instruction should be further
promoted.” Council also said it was in favour of developing and promoting
Xhosa as an academic language.

The principles adopted at the meeting would be presented to a group dealing
with language revision. The group was asked to consider including them
before the new draft language policy was presented to the senate on June 3,
council chairperson, George Steyn, said in the statement.

The new draft policy would be discussed and decided upon on June 22.

Steyn described the matter as complex and criticised those in the Council
who had liaised with the Afrikaans media.

*One-sided reporting*

He said an article by civil rights group AfriForum on its website and a
linked SMS campaign was a “selective and one-sided reporting of events”.

“The claim in the article that the order by Judge Kate Savage on 19 May
2016 now forces SU to implement its language policy and plan, as well as
the language specifications published in the 2016 yearbooks – was in fact
an order which SU had accepted and implemented close to two months
earlier,” said Steyn.

This week, AfriForum Youth withdrew its court application for the
university to halt the revision of its language policy.

In 2015, the university announced that all learning at the institution
would soon be in English as it was the common language in the country.

In a statement at the time, the rector's management team on language policy
said “substantial academic support” would be provided in other South
African languages, according to students' needs.

AfriForum Youth said the proposal disregarded almost half the Western
Cape's residents, who spoke Afrikaans.

In March, the organisation filed an urgent application in the Western Cape
High Court and claimed that Afrikaans students had been disadvantaged in
some faculties as lectures were in English
*Read more on:   * *stellenbosch university
<http://www.news24.com/Tags/Companies/stellenbosch_university>*  |  *cape
town <http://www.news24.com/Tags/Places/cape_town>*  |  *education


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